Misinformation about Corona treatment dominates the Amazon platform
Misinformation about Corona treatment dominates the Amazon platform

The Amazon platform alerts users to an anti-parasitic drug that falsely claims to be able to treat the coronavirus. This medicine called ivermectin is most commonly used to treat or prevent parasites in animals.

It has become the latest coronavirus abuse in the past few weeks, leading to warnings from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

If you search for the term iv on Amazon, the autocomplete feature on the site has a range of ivermectin products, including ivermectin pills, ivermectin paste, and ivermectin injections.

Auto-populated search results indicate that enough people searched for ivermectin that the platform's search algorithm was automatically trained to place it above suggested results.

User reviews of some products seem to make false claims that ivermectin is a treatment for coronavirus.

In a separate list of ivermectin, a commenter gave dosage instructions and added a link to a website promoting misinformation about the coronavirus, including the fact that ivermectin is safe and effective in treating the virus. .

A spokesperson for the platform said, “Amazon’s autocomplete suggestions are based on customer activity. We block some autocomplete responses to fix these issues.

The platform has added notifications to search for human ivermectin, indicating that the Food and Drug Administration is advising against using ivermectin to treat or prevent coronavirus. The notice encourages users to visit the Food and Drug Administration website for more information.

Misinformation about Corona treatment dominates the Amazon platform

People can use ivermectin in small doses to treat parasites such as head lice. But veterinarians usually use it to deworm larger animals.

Although it is known that it is a useful drug for the treatment of some parasitic diseases. However, its effectiveness against coronavirus or other viruses has not been proven.

However, this drug has garnered a lot of attention, including in some Facebook groups and Reddit communities.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, prescriptions for ivermectin are 24 times higher than they were before the epidemic.

Typically approximately 3,600 prescriptions for ivermectin are prescribed each week. The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said outpatient spending on ivermectin has begun to grow rapidly again since early July 2021, reaching more than 88,000 prescriptions in the week ending August 13, 2021.

Earlier this month, the US Food and Drug Administration issued a warning to Americans not to take ivermectin.

Amazon has already been scrutinized for selling products with misleading claims about the coronavirus to the market.

Last February, after an increase in the number of suspected coronavirus products, the company added a search term for coronavirus, covid-19, n95 masks and other terms to direct users to the CDC to learn more about coronavirus prevention and treatment. more information. illness.

Amazon has worked hard to remove books and other products that contain incorrect information about the coronavirus.

A recent study by researchers from the University of Washington found that more than 10% of search results on Amazon showed products that spread false health information.

Researchers reviewed books, e-books, audiobooks, clothing, and diet supplements.

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