The treatment of Covid patients in SC and elsewhere in America has been politicized and is contentious causing unnecessary deaths. It has pitted doctors against hospitals and pharmacies. Hospitals have withheld or restricted treatment using drugs known to speed recovery. Pharmacies have refused to fill prescriptions for such drugs as Ivermectin and Hydroxychloroquine.
I teamed with Sen. Shane Martin in requesting a legal opinion from SC Attorney General Alan Wilson. That Opinion was released on February 11th. What does the law say?
Doctors Have the Right to Treat Patients
SC law strongly supports the principle of no interference in doctors’ prescriptions for their patients, including for treatment of Covid-19 through off-label drugs. The Opinion underscores the broad discretion given to doctors in prescribing medications and those pharmacists cannot interfere with a doctor’s decision. A doctor may – and often does – prescribe off-label if, in his judgment, such treatment is warranted. The Opinion also stresses that our state Supreme Court has stated that a hospital may not interfere in the medication prescribed by a physician.
The Attorney General has provided us with a timely and tremendously important reminder of long-standing South Carolina law that clearly states so long as doctors obtain informed consent, do not act in obviously negligent or dangerous ways, and have not deceived their patients, then neither the government nor hospitals nor pharmacies can get in their way when they prescribe medicine that can save their patients’ lives, or otherwise heal them.
It is also important to note that the SC General Assembly passed a Joint Resolution in 2021 providing limited immunity to physicians who prescribe off-label drugs for COVID-19.
This Attorney General Opinion bolsters the stance of brave doctors who have secretly treated patients with Ivermectin, Hydroxychloroquine, steroids, heavy vitamin doses, and other methods to combat Covid. These doctors have been threatened by their accreditation agencies and hospitals for using successful treatments that have saved lives. Most hospitals have adhered to the ever-fluid CDC protocols, which limit treatment instead of equipping doctors with everything they need to heal their patients. Families know that having a loved one placed on a ventilator is an almost certain death sentence.
After reviewing our Attorney General’s well-written warning, hospitals need to heed it. Why? Because long-standing case law favors doctors and their special relationship with their patients. How can any of us support any hospital restricting treatment to a dying patient while a doctor is advocating for proven alternative Covid treatments?
Attorney General Wilson has studied the law and rightfully sided with doctors and Covid patients. Hopefully, hospitals and pharmacies will start helping doctors and stop hindering them! That is my prayer. What is it yours?
PHOTO OF THE WEEK
Welcome to the Statehouse! The 2022 Leadership Aiken Class spent Wednesday at the Capitol beginning with a Q&A session with Aiken County legislators. These volunteers are spending a year gaining insights into vital aspects of government and civic functions so they can lead public service initiatives now and in the future.
I’m Available and AT YOUR SERVICE
It is my honor to be of service. If you need assistance during these trying times, navigating state government, or have any thoughts or concerns about the legislature, please do not hesitate to contact me.
In Your Service,
South Carolina General Assembly
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