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Horowitz: 12 things red-state legislatures must do tomorrow to reset COVID policy
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Horowitz: 12 things red-state legislatures must do tomorrow to reset COVID policy

They've been completely missing in action for 18 months. Ever since our federal government and state governors reset our health care, culture, society, economy, and relationship with government with their "15 days to flatten the curve" plan last March, state legislatures — the unit of government closest to the people — have been in the witness protection program. A year and a half later, our government has flattened our liberty and economy, yet the virus is worse than ever because not a penny of the trillions of dollars spent have gone to early and preventive treatment. In other words, rather than keeping people out of the hospital, our policy response was designed to ensure that as many people as possible wind up in the hospital.

With state legislatures reconvening in special sessions to redraw our election maps, they have much more important things to deal with than redistricting. Before drawing the maps, they have a responsibility to hold hearings and pass legislation dealing with the problems with the leaky vaccine, vaccine and mask mandates, the censorship of heroic doctors treating COVID, the war on cheap, effective therapeutics, and prioritizing the billions of dollars in COVID funding for what actually saves lives rather than what controls lives. To that end, state legislatures and governors should promote the following ideas:

What works and should be done to treat COVID:

1. Right to try: We have all witnessed the gut-wrenching stories of people being refused effective treatments in hospitals, even when the hospital doctors are advising families to take patients off life support. States must pass a law requiring hospitals to give patients the right to try any FDA-approved drug prescribed by a licensed physician, at least if the patient's family is willing to pay for it and accept all liability.

2. Right to prescribe and practice medicine: Physicians may not be penalized with medical licensure because they share documented medical information or their own professional experience and observations. Those who speak up against public officials, if done in the public interest, may not suffer undue retaliation in the form of loss of board certification, licensure, or loss of privileges. They must also not be penalized for prescribing any off-label (but FDA-approved) drug to treat COVID, as on paper, there is not a single on-label approved drug for COVID, which is the main policy responsible for 90% of the COVID deaths and the run on the hospitals.

3. Right to fill prescription: All pharmacists must fill FDA-approved prescriptions for medications for off-label use so long as they are prescribed by a licensed practitioner. Failure to fill a prescription would result in a $100,000 fine. Anywhere from 10% to 20% of all prescriptions are off-label, and pharmacists never interfere with them. An uncontrolled pandemic with no other ways of alleviating the hospitals is an even more important time to not interfere with such prescriptions.

4. Right to coverage: Medical insurance companies must cover prescriptions for COVID the same way they would other respiratory viruses, such as bronchitis or pneumonia. If we are going to live under Obamacare, where one cannot go into the insurance business without actuarily insolvent coverage mandates, then you better believe we are not going to make a carve-out for COVID fascism.

5. Right to independent practice: States should encourage independent physicians, including all the talented physicians chased out of the hospitals for not getting the shots, to start COVID treatment clinics where they prioritize the patient and real science over Big Pharma. But any health care provider who wants to innovate with specialty ideas or establish new hospitals is automatically confronted with the near-insurmountable "certificate of need" (CON), which requires them to undergo a cumbersome process of licensing. CON requirements exist on top of the regular licensing requirements and FDA regulations. Like most regulations and barriers to innovation in health care, they were created by the existing health care establishment and are a way to box out competition and new ideas. The CONs and other red tape need to go.

6. Test and treat: It's time to move away from the failed "test and trace" model and move towards a "test and treat" system. As soon as people test positive, they should be given prescriptions immediately rather than be sent home empty-handed with fear and no hope. With a fraction of the billions in COVID funding each state spent on failed policies, they could easily fund physicians to man the testing centers and treat people on the spot, as well as a surge in the production of cheap, off-patent drugs that have shown to work against the virus.

7. Family treatment packets: States have spent hundreds of billions of dollars on endless welfare programs and social engineering. Yet they have failed to spend a penny on getting people prepared for the virus. The one thing that would have quelled the pandemic, and indeed obviated the need for all the other spending, was shunned. States must right that ship by promoting family treatment packages that any family can pick up and use for preparation. The kit should include multiple home COVID tests, a pulse oximeter, a nebulizer, aspirin, vitamins and supplements, and a guide to treating COVID along with information on where to get treatment.

What does not work and must be stopped:

8. Stop the blank check for remdesivir: The only treatment approved for COVID is remdesivir, and state and federal subsidy programs are paying $3,000 a treatment for something that has shown zero efficacy. Studies have found a statistically significant correlation of remdesivir use with kidney failure, which is partly why even the WHO recommends against using it. The universal use of remdesivir is one of the greatest scandals of COVID, especially when juxtaposed to the excuses given to reject much safer and more effective longstanding drugs.

9. Ban all discrimination against any hospital patient based on their medical history: Existing law applies this to HIV, and no physician would discriminate on account of the patient being a smoker or a drug consumer. Someone who chose not to get the vaccine should be no different.

10. Investigate the vaccines: Hold hearings with true experts about the waning efficacy, the risk of leaky vaccine syndrome, and the scope of the unreported short-term and long-term side effects. Before states continue to pump millions of dollars into a failing vaccine, shouldn't we get the facts straight?

11. Abolish all mandates: Every red state needs to ban all public and private vaccine and mask mandates, which violate human rights and have clearly shown not to work over 18 months. They should criminalize the enforcement of any federal mandate.

12. Make non-compete or non-contact clauses in physicians' or pharmacists' contracts illegal: At present, the reason most doctors won't treat COVID and many pharmacists won't fill prescriptions is because they will be fired, and then, pursuant to their non-compete clauses, they cannot practice anywhere in the region. These clauses threaten and sever the doctor-patient relationship, eroding its trust, and are used to financially threaten providers and pharmacists into compliance, as these providers cannot disagree with the contracting entities (usually health networks) that the federal government has control over. If such an organization threatened to fire such a provider, the provider could open shop across the street and the patients could follow them, free of control by outside forces.

From day one, our government's response has been focused on controlling people rather than controlling the pandemic. It's time to replace control with care and mandates with compassion. This is what it truly means to all be in this together.

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Daniel Horowitz

Daniel Horowitz

Blaze Podcast Host

Daniel Horowitz is the host of “Conservative Review with Daniel Horowitz” and a senior editor for Blaze News.
@RMConservative →