The highly accomplished Dr. Paul Marik is the founder and Co-Chief Medical Officer at Front Line COVID-19 Critical Care Alliance (FLCCC) and long-time director of Sentara Norfolk General Hospital’s intensive care unit. He recently filed a lawsuit against Sentara Healthcare System because they refuse to let him treat his patients with the highly-effective drug Ivermectin, as well as other proven treatments in his established MATH+ Protocol.
In 2020, Dr. Marik founded FLCCC along with several other critical care specialists to “gather, research and share information among health care professionals and the public.” The single purpose of their collaboration was to meet COVID-19 head-on and save lives. Indeed, by analyzing, devising, and publicizing best-practice treatments for the virus, Dr. Marik and his colleagues pioneered treatment protocols that have become standard of care. One such regimen is known as the MATH+ Protocol, which doctors worldwide use to treat COVID-19.
I hope all can appreciate how hard this is on Dr. Marik – the absurd lengths he and we have to go for our expertise to be recognized & not infringed upon. Our only objective is to "re-gain" the freedom to decide best course of Rx for our COVID patients. Stop the tyranny man https://t.co/NCHn1J0nEv
— Pierre Kory, MD MPA (@PierreKory) November 18, 2021
With such proven treatments, the complaint, filed Nov. 8, 2021, in the Circuit Court for the City of Norfolk, Virginia, states that Sentara Healthcare is “preventing terminally ill COVID patients from exercising their right to choose and to receive safe, potentially life-saving treatment determined to be appropriate for them by their attending physician.” Following Sentara’s directive that he could no longer administer the protocols he’s successfully used to reduce COVID deaths by as much as 50%, Dr. Marik said he could no longer stand by while patients needlessly die without proper treatment.
My deepest respect to Dr. Paul Marik. He is one of the most esteemed physicians in the USA. What is happening to him is unconscionable. https://t.co/9Cg9c0ercl
— Robert W Malone, MD (@RWMaloneMD) November 22, 2021
The lawsuit seeks a motion for temporary injunction. The case describes how critically ill patients at the Sentara hospital are “dying unnecessarily and unjustifiably.” Specifically, the case explains that from Oct. 25-31, 2021, while Dr. Marik was the attending ICU physician, he watched helplessly as seven COVID patients grew increasingly and desperately ill. Because of hospital policy, they were denied the opportunity to learn of and be treated with potentially life-saving medicines that COVID doctors around the world have successfully used to reduce mortality. The lawsuit contends:
“Of the seven COVID patients who came under [Dr. Marik’s] care in this period, four died. The remaining three will likely die as well. In stark contrast, doctors in other hospitals using the protocol of COVID medicines that Dr. Marik favors have achieved mortality rates of 4-7%.”
International petition started for Dr. Marik.. great to see the broadening support. Please sign! https://t.co/oSVJoDo9fy
— Pierre Kory, MD MPA (@PierreKory) November 19, 2021
The lawsuit outlines how, since the onset of the pandemic, Dr. Marik has become “a world-leading authority on the pathophysiology and treatment of COVID—indeed, perhaps the foremost COVID critical care specialist alive. He published 15 articles in peer-reviewed medical journals and delivered 11 invited national and international lectures, on various COVID topics, with a focus on clinical treatment. A review paper for which Dr. Marik served as senior author has an altimetric popularity rank of #38 out of the last 19,278,000 scientific papers on any topic.”
Under Virginia law, every patient has the right to receive treatment considered appropriate for them by their attending physician, and terminally ill patients have the right to try investigational medicines that their treating physician recommends. Dr. Marik filed the lawsuit to allow him and his colleagues to administer the combination of FDA-approved, life-saving drugs and other therapies that, for over 18 months, have saved thousands of critically ill COVID-19 patients. Explaining the matter, he stated:
“This case is about doctors having the ability to honor their Hippocratic Oath, to follow evidence-based medicine, and to treat our patients the best we know-how. Corporations and faceless bureaucrats should not be allowed to interfere with doctor-patient decisions, especially when it can result in harm or death. I refuse to watch another patient die from COVID-19 knowing that I was not allowed to give them the proven treatments that could have saved their life.”
On Friday, Nov. 12, Sentara filed a motion to dismiss Dr. Marik’s complaint against them. Dr. Marik responded to the motion asserting that Sentara’s dismissal is a “paper-thin” effort to avoid the actual life and death issues confronting the hospital by claiming that Dr. Marik himself (as opposed to his patients) has allegedly suffered no harm. Fred Taylor, attorney for Dr. Marik, commented:
“Sentara’s defense avoids the very real harm to both the patient’s right to receive life-saving treatment and the right of her doctor to prescribe it. This case is about whether a hospital administration can legally prohibit critically ill COVID-19 patients from receiving information and treatment, if they and their doctors so decide it is medically appropriate for them. Virginia law is clear, the attending physician and not the hospital has the authority to use the treatment they have deemed appropriate.”
Still restricted from offering his life-saving treatment protocol, Dr. Marik resumed his one-week-per-month duties as an attending ICU physician at the hospital on Nov. 15. Faced with caring for critically ill COVID patients, the timeframe to introduce effective, life-saving treatments is extremely small. The lawsuit, which includes several declarations of support, explains that Dr. Marik has only one, or at most two days after a patient is admitted to the ICU to begin administering the MATH+ Protocol if that is to offer the best (and often only) chance of survival. In addition to support from colleagues, over 20 advance directives were submitted to the court, and FLCCC shares it has received “outpouring of support for Dr. Marik from around the world.”
With a large crowd of supporters for Dr. Marik gathered outside the courthouse, the hearing in the case took place on Thursday, Nov. 18, 2021, and included testimony from Dr. Marik and Dr. Joel Bundy, chief quality and safety control officer for Sentara Healthcare. The judge also heard arguments from attorneys for both sides. Dr. Marik testified, saying, “This is not normal. It’s cruel and unusual punishment.” Fred Taylor, a Suffolk attorney representing Dr. Marik, argued that the ban on proven treatments—that in no way harm Sentara—interferes with the relationship between a doctor and patient and violates the patient’s rights.
“We have a solution to this crisis. There is a drug that is proving to be of miraculous impact." ~Dr. Pierre Kory
The truth about how one doctor is making an enormous impact: https://t.co/XoYjK2kZF0
— FLCCC—Front Line COVID-19 Critical Care Alliance (@Covid19Critical) November 19, 2021
The attorney for Sentara, Jason Davis, argued that it was wrong for Dr. Marik to force the hospital to go against what they feel is in the patients’ best interests. He also asserted it is the hospital system’s responsibility to ensure the medicines administered by its doctors are safe and effective in a particular situation.
Before the last Thursday’s trial began, Dr. Marik issued a heartfelt message, saying, “It is truly inspiring to hear from so many that support this case and the right of doctors to follow their Hippocratic Oath and treat our patients the best we know-how. We hope for a positive outcome on Thursday and that the court decides to put the power of medical decisions back in the hands of doctors and our patients.”
Following the hearing, Judge David Lannetti did not immediately rule on Dr. Marik’s request but said he would issue a decision soon.