Arecent New York Times/Siena College poll showing 64 percent of Democrats preferring a new standard-bearer in 2024 rocked the White House and the political landscape, but it should not have come as a big surprise. After all, President Joe Biden continues to fall short of the promises that drew many Democrats, including myself, to his candidacy in 2020: his pledge for a new strategy combatting Covid-19.
Consider the Food and Drug Administration’s recent decision allowing pharmacists to play doctor and prescribe Pfizer’s anti-viral treatment Paxlovid, which Biden himself, having contracted Covid-19, is now taking. The agency claims this is meant to increase access to the medicine, which must be taken as soon as symptoms arise. But the drug’s fact sheet is a tangled web of restrictions that will make it impractical for most pharmacies to take the risk. Why is the FDA encouraging this?
The answer is plain to anyone who has been following the plight of independent doctors during the pandemic. Our public health agencies — heavily influenced by the pharmaceutical industry and beholden to Biden’s “vaccine first” approach — are committed to diminishing the medical profession and centralizing authority with bureaucrats in Washington, D.C. They have prosecuted a relentless campaign to reduce physicians to cogs in a health care system that is aggressively transforming all medical professionals from providers to prescribers.
The problems with Paxlovid are no secret. FDA granted Pfizer emergency use authorization for the drug after a single trial with questionable results. The medicine has many contraindications, meaning it can’t be taken by someone who simultaneously would be taking certain anti-depressants, anti-seizure, anti-psychotic, cholesterol, or blood pressure medications. Furthermore, many Americans cannot take Paxlovid, given that nearly half of adults have cardiovascular disease.
The risks are plain to see in FDA’s guidance, which recommends referring the patient to a doctor if “sufficient information is not available to assess renal and hepatic function” or “potential drug interactions.” Numerous contraindications are listed, and caution is advised throughout. The burden is on the patient to furnish medical records to prove that he or she doesn’t have any significant kidney or liver disease, drug sensitivities, or other medications that could cause serious adverse events.