After The New York Times published an article about the use of ivermectin to combat COVID-19, claiming that 70% of recent calls to the Mississippi poison control center were related to ivermectin, they were corrected by an investigative journalist who pointed out that the real figure was 2%, not 70%.
The journalist, Mary Beth Pfeiffer, tweeted, “I contacted @nytimes & they corrected 8/25 ivermectin article. ‘This article misstated the percentage of recent calls to the Mississippi poison control center related to ivermectin. It was 2 percent, not 70 percent,’ says appended note. Sentence removed. Poof. But damage done.”
Pfeiffer added in an email to the New York Times editor, “Just an aside, it’s interesting that the sentence was dropped altogether. It was not a newsworthy fact to include any longer. The erroneous alert from which the incorrect statistic was taken is what started the entire campaign against ivermectin. It spurred the FDA tweet. The rest— the CDC alert, the AMA decision — is history.”
The “erroneous alert “ Pfeiffer referred to was issued by the Mississippi State Department of Health on August 20. ABC 12 reported:According to the alert, the Mississippi Poison Control Center has received several calls related to the ingestion of ivermectin meant for livestock, which is causing illness in COVID-19 patients. Ivermectin is approved for use in both people and animals, but animal drugs are highly concentrated and can be highly toxic in humans.
According to the health alert: No one has been hospitalized due to ingestion of the drug. At least 70% of the recent calls have been related to ingestion of livestock or animal formulations of ivermectin purchased at livestock supply centers. 85% of the callers had mild symptoms.
The August 21 FDA tweet that Pfeiffer referred to stated, “You are not a horse. You are not a cow. Seriously, y’all. Stop it.”
You are not a horse. You are not a cow. Seriously, y'all. Stop it. https://t.co/TWb75xYEY4
— U.S. FDA (@US_FDA) August 21, 2021