Young indian doctor woman against a wall covering mouth, symbol of silence and repression, trying not to say anything

Your right to learn from your doctor about natural methods of staying healthy during the pandemic are under threat. We must fight back. Petition!

The FDA, FTC, Department of Justice, and some state attorneys general have launched a coordinated censorship campaign that prevents medical and naturopathic doctors from communicating their extensive knowledge about how to stay healthy during the pandemic using natural medicine. The actions of these federal agencies will lead to more COVID-19 infections and death. We have to fight back to preserve our right to stay healthy, naturally.

The FDA and FTC sent more than a hundred warning letters to doctors, clinics, and companies. These letters all allege that companies or individuals were 1) illegally advertising that certain products treat or prevent Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) or related conditions, such as inflammation and/or 2) making claims on their websites implying that a product could mitigate, prevent, treat, diagnose, or cure COVID-19 or related conditions in people, making the product an unapproved drug under the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act.

In reviewing many of these letters, what becomes clear is that this isn’t about public health, but rather censoring scientific information about natural products and protecting the profits of drug companies. One letter was sent to a nutritionist who talked about the results of a recent study showing that the severity of coronavirus patient outcome was tied to the patient’s vitamin D status. The post concluded, “The bottom line? In order to give yourself the best defense against the coronavirus, begin with optimizing your vitamin D status to at least 30 ng/ml starting today.” Is vitamin D now a public health threat that the government must snuff out? Does the government really want to quash information that could help us stay healthy?

Government censors also didn’t like when doctors wrote that vitamin D “has demonstrated efficacy for respiratory health…and has anti-inflammatory properties,” or when they quote science, such as a scholarly paper that “argues that melatonin—at low doses like 0.5 or 1 mg per day—might curb virulence of the coronavirus…”.  The FTC is even flagging claims about the use of natural approaches to fight respiratory infections and support immunity.

At issue for many of these letters is the idea that, according to the FTC, it is unlawful to advertise that a product can prevent, treat, or cure human disease unless you possess “competent and reliable scientific evidence” to substantiate the claim. The FTC has interpreted this to mean that you need a randomized controlled trial (RCT), which is an impossible standard because of costs and other reasons for everyone but drug companies. (This issue was litigated a number of years ago in the POM Wonderful case we covered extensively.)

We believe these kinds of actions are really meant to preserve the drug industry monopoly on medicine. RCTs are prohibitively expensive, costing billions of dollars on average. Drug companies can afford this massive investment because drugs are patentable and enjoy a period of market exclusivity, so companies can recoup the cost of RCTs. Natural products are generally not patentable, so requiring RCTs to make any specific disease claim—no matter how many studies support the claim—is a backhanded way of preventing all disease claims for natural products and thus preserving the monopoly of pharmaceutical drugs to treat illness.

So let’s get this straight. The FDA and FTC are telling doctors they can’t talk about or advise the public on natural methods of treating or preventing COVID-19. These same agencies, particularly the FDA in combination with the CDC, have repeatedly bungled our nation’s response to the pandemic. These same agencies issue emergency approvals for dangerous drugs that go on to kill people. These same agencies are threatening to take away women’s rights to choose estriol as a treatment. These same agencies, and the laws they enforce, make our medicine less effective, more expensive, and more dangerous. And now they want to prevent Americans from learning about scientifically-proven benefits of supplements like vitamin D to help during the pandemic? Never before has our crony capitalist government put so many lives at risk so needlessly.

Note too that President Trump himself is not only taking zinc along with hydroxychloroquine. He is also publicizing it, which is seemingly at odds with the position of the agencies within his own government.

Various state attorneys general have also gotten in on the action.

This is not just another action alert. This is a petition. We are going to be contacting federal and state officials, including the President, to explain how agencies that are supposed to be protecting Americans are, and have been, undermining and endangering our health. This is a critical moment, and we need as many signatures as possible. Please take action below and share this with people you know.

Petition! Write to President Trump, telling him to stop the FDA and the FTC from further pursuing this censorship campaign, with copies to Congress and state legislators, telling them to fix the laws that make medicine in this country more expensive, more dangerous, and less effective. Please send your message immediately.


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