Mother of COVID-19 patient in Olathe sues to compel ivermectin treatment

Olathe Medical Center
Posted at 11:56 AM, Dec 14, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-15 11:21:40-05

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The mother of a 41-year-old man currently sedated for treatment of COVID-19 has sued Olathe Medical Center in hopes of forcing the hospital to give her son ivermectin.

Sherri Belden filed a petition for an emergency order in Johnson County District Court, hoping to force Olathe Medical Center to treat her son, Deke, with the anti-parasitic drug.

Ivermectin is most often used to treat heartworm in animals and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has not approved, nor does it recommend, its use as a COVID-19 treatment in humans.

Deke Belden is under sedation for treatment of pneumonia related to a COVID-19 infection, according to court documents, but had communicated to his mother a desire to continue the controversial treatment when he contracted the virus last month.

His personal physician has approved Deke Belden’s use of ivermectin, which he began taking through a private supply belonging to his mother.

Despite taking ivermectin, Deke Belden was admitted Nov. 27 at Olathe Medical Center’s emergency room, where the treatment was stopped based on hospital policy.

"The physicians and caregivers at Olathe Medical Center take an evidence-based approach to COVID-19 treatment, just as with any other illness or condition," the hospital said in a statement to KSHB 41 News. "The patient’s best interest is always the top priority with consideration of all appropriate treatment options as guided by certifying medical boards."

However, Dr. Dana Hawkinson, the medical director of Infection Prevention and Control for the University of Kansas Health System, said during a Facebook conversation Nov. 19 that ivermectin is a “good drug” for treating parasitic infections.

“But it’s an anti-parasitic drug,” he said. “A parasite is totally different than a virus, which is totally different than a bacteria.”

Hawkinson noted in a Facebook conversation Nov. 10 that several papers, which touted the benefits of ivermectin as a COVID-19 treatment, have been retracted after being found to rely on falsified or erroneous data.

Nonetheless, Sherri Belden brought ivermectin to Olathe Medical Center and attempted to give it to her son, but hospital staff intervened, according to the petition for emergency order, which claims his condition has worsened since he was admitted.

Deke Belden’s mother is seeking the order to resume ivermectin treatments as “the last, best chance of survival from this dread disease. But the window of opportunity may be closing, and his chance of surviving this killer disease may be diminishing by the hour.”

The petition for emergency order also seeks to have his personal physician granted emergency privileges at Olathe Medical Center.

A Pennsylvania man’s wife filed a similar lawsuit and was able to force the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center to allow him to be treated with ivermectin. The man died despite resumption of the treatment.