America's Top Critical Care Doctor Sues to Save His Patients and the Hippocratic Oath (Paul Marik, Part I).
Dr. Marik helplessly watched seven covid patients die needlessly after his hospital denied his use of life-saving drugs. He goes to court Thursday for the right to use his judgement to save lives.
If you go by the mortality data, the seven patients who came into the Sentara Norfolk General Hospital ICU in the week of October 24 to 31, all gravely ill with covid-19, were, comparably speaking, lucky.
The 560-bed hospital is a teaching hospital and the only tertiary-care level facility for the 1.8 million people who live in the Hampton Roads region. The most severe covid cases in the region are referred there. And their attending physician was Dr. Paul E. Marik, chief of the hospital’s intensive care unit, endowed professor of internal medicine at the Eastern Virginia Medical School, and author of more than 500 peer-reviewed journal articles on critical care medicine, including ten papers on treatment of covid-19. Marik is the most published critical care doctor in the history of medicine who also sees patients. Long reputed as a giant in critical care medicine and pulmonology, the speciality under ferocious attack by covid, Marik is widely believed to be one of the most knowledgeable doctors in the world on treating the deadly respiratory disease in all its stages.
He lectures globally on covid, from physicians in the Harvard University health system to thousands of doctors in India on one Zoom call. All hospitals in the Ukraine have adopted Marik’s protocols as the national standard, and they are used by doctors and hospitals across the globe. He is a founder of the Front Line Covid-19 Critical Care Alliance (FLCCC.net) and lead developer of the FLCCC’s MATH+ protocol of the steroid methylprednisolone, ascorbic acid (intravenous Vitamin C), thiamine (vitamin B1), and the blood thinner heparin for all hospitalized covid patients, having discovered the efficacy of steroids months before the NIH accepted it as the standard of care.
The approximately 200 ICU covid patients in Norfolk, the “sickest of the sick” who were treated by Dr. Marik, had mortality under 20 percent versus approximately 40 to 60 percent for patients he had not treated. His colleagues in hospitals that allow them the freedom to use Marik’s protocols earlier in the disease as Marik prescribes have achieved ICU mortality rates of 5 to 7 percent, versus at least 20 percent in recent U.S. and global studies of ICU covid patients. Last year, Marik also discovered the “data signal” for ivermectin as the most powerful, safe, FDA-approved covid-killer, and has advocated its use worldwide, saving countless lives. He’s won many awards including the National Teacher of the Year award by the American College of Physicians in 2017, but many scientists believe Marik merits the Nobel Prize.
Yet that recent week in October, the seven sick covid patients were out of luck. On October 6, Dr. Marik had received an email message from Dr. Joel Bundy, MD, Sentara’s Chief Quality and Safety Officer with “the newest COVID-19 Comprehensive Treatment Guidelines (Version 26).” It essentially banned Marik and other doctors from using ivermectin, bicalutamide, etoposide, fluvoxamine, dutasteride, even intravenous Vitamin C, all long-established, FDA-approved, well-tolerated drugs that Marik considered essential to treat covid.
Marik worked his ICU rotation from October 25 to 31, his first since Dr. Bundy’s message conveying the Sentara Hospital prohibition. “This turned out to be the most harrowing week of my life,” he said.
“I was barred from telling my GICU (General Intensive Care Unit) patients about alternative available covid treatments (the MATH+ Protocol) not being offered to them. I would have had my hospital privileges revoked should I do otherwise, and the hospital pharmacy is under the same prohibition from dispensing these medicines.”
In a recent interview, Marik said, “I should never have had to go through this. No doctor should go through this. It’s my job to save my patients.”
According to court papers he recently filed in the Circuit Court in Norfolk, Marik “had to sit idly by and watch four of my patients die, including a thirty-two-year-old woman, while being prohibited from providing the treatment that they so desperately needed, and which had proven so effective with other patients in the past. When I ended this seven-day rotation on October 31, another three patients were on a similar downward path: one was chemically paralyzed and on a ventilator; one was tracheostomized being ventilator dependent, being fed with a PEG feeding tube and was severely encephalopathic; while the third remained in the ICU dependent on a high concentration of oxygen and likely to die.
“All of these patients were “full code” on GICU admission, i.e., had no restrictions on their care,” Marik continues. “For each of those patients, I would have given the MATH+ protocol in the crucial one- to two-day window after they were first admitted to my GICU. I could not honor their “full code” directive because of the Sentara Hospital-imposed prohibition, which I believe is violative of the very essence of the doctor/patient relationship. As the clinician, I also am bound by the Hippocratic duty to provide the best care I deem possible for these patients.
“My next GICU 24/7 weekly call will be November 15 to 21, 2021. When I report for duty as the attending physician of record for those twenty GICU patients, it is virtually certain that I will treat acutely ill covid patients, and several or more of these patients may die if the operation of the Sentara Hospital Prohibition is not stayed or reversed.”
On Thursday, Marik is asking for the court to reverse the hospital’s prohibition on covid treatments and affirm “he and his critically ill patients’ rights to discuss and decide to use FDA-approved, potentially life-saving drugs their physician deems medically appropriate.”
Full disclosure: I’ve been interviewing Dr. Marik since May 2020 for a book on him and the FLCCC doctors’ efforts to save the world from covid. If you’ve never heard about Marik, or are unaware that the government and hospitals are actively blocking the doctor-patient relationship, or of the Sophie’s Choice facing so many doctors threatened or fired for using FDA-approved drugs for the fist time in modern U.S. history, it’s even more important you read the remarkable document that is Marik’s lawsuit. Please also consider our other coverage from the point of view of Marik’s colleagues at the FLCCC and from a Virginia doctor leading a march to support Marik on Thursday at the Circuit Court in Virginia.