Florida Doctor Stands Firm Against State and National Medical Boards’ Condemnation of COVID-19 Therapeutics

By Matt McGregor
Matt McGregor
Matt McGregor
Reporter
Matt McGregor covers news from North and South Carolina for The Epoch Times. Send him your story ideas: matt.mcgregor@epochtimes.us
October 20, 2021 Updated: October 20, 2021

State and national medical boards, pharmaceutical lobbyist associations, and federal consumer agencies continue to strive to single out COVID-19 vaccines as the only “safe and effective” remedy to the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus.

Leland Stillman, a physician at Integrative Medicine in Florida who prescribes ivermectin, told The Epoch Times in September that he has seen the warnings from the state medical boards.

“They are saying that if you spread disinformation or misinformation about COVID-19, they will take disciplinary action, but they haven’t provided us with any specifics on what constitutes disinformation or misinformation,” Stillman said.

Many doctors, he said, are keeping silent because they are afraid of losing their license.

“We are really being told by the government and our professional organizations like the state medical boards that we are not allowed to have a therapeutic opinion that deviates from the federal government’s,” Stillman said.

Most recently, the Tennessee Board of Medical Examiners (TBME) has adopted the national non-profit Federation of State Medical Boards’ policy on bringing disciplinary action to physicians who disseminate what the board classifies as misinformation or disinformation around COVID-19.

In its Sept. 21 meeting, the Tennessee board discussed three categories of physicians who the board said are falsifying information: the vaccine-hesitant physicians who share their opinion with patients, physicians who “make up facts” about the vaccine, and physicians who are advising multiple patients not to get the vaccine.

After one board member asked who will determine what constitutes misinformation, a staff member referred to an investigative process that would require the doctor to show proof from “recognized” academic and medical journals that support the doctor’s opinion, with the state having the burden of proof.

The American Pharmacists Association and American Society of Health-System Pharmacists are among the organizations that join the American Medical Association in its condemnation of the use of medical treatments outside of the three vaccines.

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has gone so far as to threaten medical practices with a fine of $43,792 per violation for recommending treatments other than the vaccines, such as vitamin D and ivermectin.

In April, the FTC said that “almost 400 sellers and marketers who received the FTC warning letters have pulled unsubstantiated claims in the last year.”

A Second Opinion

Stillman began prescribing ivermectin when he saw it being used successfully with COVID-19 patients by other physicians, he said.

“Everything but ivermectin being recommended by anybody to treat or prevent COVID is more expensive, and in many cases, less practical than ivermectin,” Stillman said. “There is substantial literature to support that, but it doesn’t make money for the drug companies, so you can count on the FTA and the NIH (National Institute of Health) coming down on it like a sledgehammer,” he said.

Ivermectin in the Limelight

CNN chastised podcaster Joe Rogan after Rogan said he had treated the virus with ivermectin, among other treatments, under counsel from his doctor.

The media outlet accused him of taking the veterinary horse de-wormer form of ivermectin.

At the time, Rolling Stone sourced a local media outlet that cited Oklahoma physician Jason McElyea who claimed that people overdosing on farm-grade ivermectin were causing emergency rooms to fill up, leaving no room for gunshot victims.

Rolling Stone updated its article after a spokesperson at Northeastern Health System Sequoyah—where McElyea said the overcrowding was taking place—said McElyea hadn’t worked at that location in over two months, and that the hospital hadn’t treated any patients experiencing complications from ivermectin.

‘Shameless Water Carriers’

“I would say that the media are shameless water carriers for the pharmaceutical industry because they rely on its advertising dollars to pay its bills,” Leland said, adding that, despite the controversy, he’s found no data on whether animal ivermectin is less safe or effective than human ivermectin.

Though he said he wouldn’t endorse it, he’s seen patients who have used horse ivermectin with positive results, Stillman said, adding that there’s hysteria around the drug that has generated its own misinformation.

“Has anyone in the U.S. ever died from taking an animal form of ivermectin? I’ve looked, I’ve not been able to find a single case,” Stillman said.

First Amendment Rights

Despite the fear of losing his license, Stillman said he’s more afraid of losing his First Amendment rights.

“What kind of coward worries about his livelihood when his basic fundamental human rights are under threat?” Stillman asked. “This is one of the things that really bothers me about my profession right now.  A lot of doctors don’t seem to care about defending our freedoms.”

Matt McGregor
Matt McGregor covers news from North and South Carolina for The Epoch Times. Send him your story ideas: matt.mcgregor@epochtimes.us