Judge denies Norfolk doctor's attempt to prescribe controversial drug to COVID-19 patients following suspension from duties at Sentara

Posted at 5:39 PM, Nov 23, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-07 20:58:41-05

NORFOLK, Va. - A judge has denied a local doctor's attempt to be able to prescribe ivermectin to COVID-19 patients.

The ruling against Dr. Paul Marik's injunction came down late Tuesday afternoon. The Norfolk Circuit Court Clerks Office said the court denied in part Sentara Healthcare's lack of standing motion and denied Marik's temporary injunction motion.

In a 15 page opinion, Norfolk Circuit Court Judge David Lannetti ruled against Marik's injunction, seeking to be allowed to prescribe ivermectin and other drugs at Sentara Norfolk. The case can still head for a trial, likely in 2022, where the judge said the focus would be on whether or not a doctor can violate hospital guidelines if they feel it's for an appropriate medical treatment, not whether a certain treatment is more effective than another.

“While we are disappointed that the Court did not grant the temporary injunction, our case for the rights of doctors and their patients remains alive and well. We expect to ultimately succeed on the merits of our case at trial,” Fred D. Taylor, attorney for Dr. Paul Marik told News 3.

Marik, who is the director of the Critical Care Unit at Sentara Norfolk General Hospital, is suing the healthcare system because they won't allow him to treat COVID-19 patients with the drug ivermectin, along with a host of other drugs that make up his developed MATH+ Protocol.

He appeared in court late last week.

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Dr. Paul Marik

"Almost all of the treatments we use have been demonstrated to be safe and effective in randomized controlled trials," Marik said.

Marik claims that Sentara's policy may have led to the deaths of four of his patients who were never given the opportunity to learn of or be treated with potentially life-saving medicines. He said these actions are criminal.

"It's not just for me; it's for patients across the whole country. They have the right to choose what treatment they want," Marik said last week. "It's an outrage and yet there are other effective treatments available that they are trying to silence. The patients across this country need to know that they have options."

Marik's support of ivermectin was the subject of a different News 3 investigation in September.

He and a group of doctors pointed to a list of smaller studies suggesting the drug is safe and effective at treating COVID-19, but other doctors say there needs to be more data for bigger clinical trials.

Marik’s attorney, Fred Taylor, explained what would happen if the judge had ruled in Marik's favor and allowed the temporary injunction.

"If Dr. Marik or another doctor for that matter decides it's in their patient’s best interest - they talk to their patients about it, their patient also concurs - then that gives them the opportunity to have this medication,” said Taylor.

"It seems to me it's what the committee says versus what we think, you know what I mean? It's the patient, it's the physician who is at the bedside; I am responsible for the patient,” Marik said.

The Front Line COVID-19 Critical Care Alliance (FLCCC) released a statement on the injunction saying:

FlCCC statement on injunction decision.jfif

On December 7, the group said its legal team filed a petition in the Virginia Supreme Court asking for a review of the circuit court's denial of the temporary injunction.

News 3 has reached out to Sentara's defense team for comment.

Stay with News 3 for updates.