Senior state health official and Maui doctor promote controversial COVID-19 treatments
When Canadian Merlyn Travis landed in Hawaii early last year, he planned to retire, “get away from it all,” and work on her novel which focused on Starbucks’ use of the mermaid as a logo to explore ideas of nature, mysticism, corporatism and culture. . The mermaid, in Greek mythology, lured sailors to rocky shores where they would encounter aquatic death.
“It comes down to a lot of crazy rabbit holes, but Starbucks is really kind of a story of our generation,” Travis said from his home on the North Shore of Maui.
But then the coronavirus pandemic struck, sending Travis on a different path of scientific investigation and off the beaten track theories about the COVID-19 vaccine, which he is strongly opposed to taking.
“You are just starting to connect the dots and you understand that we are entering a radically new era,” said Travis, who concluded that promoting COVID-19 vaccines is not a matter of public health and safety. Rather, according to him, it is about establishing a world government and a world currency with “a high level of surveillance and control of the population”.
Travis is referring to conspiracy theories that have been circulating the internet for months involving a secret globalist cabal led by figures such as Microsoft co-founder and philanthropist Bill Gates.
In recent weeks, Travis has stepped up his efforts to expose what he says is really going on, by launching a group called the Pono Coalition for Informed Consent. The group’s website says it “advocates for true informed consent before taking the investigational COVID-19 vaccines.”
“We eliminate censorship and propaganda and uphold the highest standards of transparency and scientific discourse,” the group’s website says.
But on his social media platforms, he has promoted various theories and conspiracy sources ridiculed for spreading false and dangerous information about the safety of COVID-19 vaccines. Earlier this month, for example, the Pono Coalition for Informed Consent retweeted a message from “Vaccine Truth” which read: “If you are under 65, the vaccine is more likely to kill you than to save your life. life.
The viral spread of vaccine misinformation has become commonplace for senior federal and state health officials as they desperately try to increase vaccination rates to help protect against a virus that has now killed more than 630,000 Americans. In Hawaii, that effort has become more serious in recent weeks with an increase in cases and state hospitals overflowing with people infected with the virus, the vast majority of whom are not vaccinated.
But what’s particularly unusual about the Pono Coalition for Informed Consent’s campaign is who she’s enlisted to be part of the group, including the state’s top health official in Maui and a local doctor who smuggled COVID-19 patients with drugs that the Food and Drug Administration has repeatedly warned against.
Dr. Lorrin Pang, who has served for over two decades as the Maui District Health Officer for the state Department of Health, is a co-founder of the Pono Coalition for Informed Consent.
His job in the state is to administer the state’s public health programs and act as the senior public health representative for the director of the state Department of Health, who is currently Dr Libby Char .
Pang, in an interview with Honolulu Star-Advertiser, said that as a member of the Pono Coalition for Informed Consent, he speaks as a private citizen and does not always agree with the opinions of others. group members. He stressed that he supports the state’s efforts to increase vaccinations against COVID-19.
“If you’re going to be guilty by association, that’s kind of prejudice, bias and censorship, isn’t it?” ” he said. “I thought in our time we look at people for who they are, not who they associate with.”
Char did not respond to whether she was concerned that Pang’s participation in the group would undermine the health ministry’s public health messages.
Among the group is Dr. Kirk Milhoan, pediatric cardiologist and senior pastor at Calvary Chapel South Maui. Milhoan and his wife, who is also a doctor, are members of the first advisory board of the Pono Coalition for Informed Consent.
Milhoan said he was leading medical missions around the world to help treat children with heart problems. He does not have a clinic in Maui, but says during the pandemic he made home visits and treated more than 80 people in Maui for COVID-19.
“I’m kind of like the ‘Little House on the Prairie’ doctor on Maui,” he said. He says his services are free and residents hear about him through “coconut wireless”.
“They hear that there is a doctor who is ready to go and help people, and he’s just a friend of a friend of a friend,” he said.
Milhoan’s treatment regiment is moving away from approved medical protocols.
He described his treatments in a videotaped chat with Pang which was moderated by Travis and recently posted to the group’s Rumble account. It’s about using hydroxychloroquine and ivermectin as early treatment options, drugs the FDA has warned people not to take to treat COVID-19.
Hydroxychloroquine has been approved by the FDA to treat malaria and certain autoimmune diseases. The World Health Organization has said there is no evidence the drug is effective in reducing the risk of serious illness or death from COVID-19, and warns that when used in patients COVID-19, it can increase the risk of heart rhythm problems, blood and lymphatic disorders, kidney damage, liver problems and failure.
Ivermectin is often used to treat parasitic worms, but has emerged as an alternative treatment for COVID-19, prompting the FDA to Tweeter this week, “You are not a horse. You are not a cow. Seriously, all of you. Stop that.”
The FDA warns that using the drug to treat COVID-19 can be dangerous and even fatal. If someone takes too much, they can overdose, causing symptoms like vomiting, low blood pressure, allergic reactions, seizures, coma and even death, according to the FDA.
But Milhoan disagrees with the FDA and maintains his early treatment protocol is an option for people like him who don’t want to be vaccinated.
Milhoan said he was wary of the speed at which vaccines were approved for emergency use and worried about unknown side effects.
“There are vaccines that I really like,” he said. “I’m really not thrilled with this one.”
Milhoan says he contracted COVID-19 in June, which gave him immunity as he treats patients with the highly contagious delta variant of the virus.
Milhoan said COVID-19 vaccines might be the right choice for some people. But he warns they could cause miscarriages and reproductive problems, even though a recent analysis of the data by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found no increased risk of miscarriage. The CDC recommends that anyone planning to become pregnant or pregnant get the vaccine.
Pang said he supports the use of hydroxychloroquine and ivermectin to treat COVID-19. “I agree with Milhoan on this point,” he told the Star-Advertiser, adding that the drugs need to be given at the right time and in the right dosage.
“It’s a question of timing,” he said. “You give the wrong thing at the wrong time, it’s very dangerous.”
A spokesperson for the Department of Health said hydroxychloroquine and ivermectin should not be used to treat COVID-19. Hawaii’s Lieutenant Governor Josh Green, who is also an emergency room physician and helped lead the state’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, said as a physician he was gravely concerned about the promotion by Milhoan on drugs to treat COVID-19.
“I don’t know who this doctor is or what their mobile clinic is doing, but we have professional treatment standards in Hawaii that the medical board and the Department of Health must adhere to to ensure patient safety,” Green said. . “I am concerned that this clinic, which operates outside the standards of care, may very well harm patients.”
Green called Pang’s support for the use of the drugs to treat COVID-19 “somewhat shocking” and “not something I would ever expect from a public health leader in our state.”
Meanwhile, Travis said the Pono Coalition for Informed Consent, which has testified publicly against the University of Hawaii’s requirement that students receive the COVID-19 vaccine or regularly test for the virus, must rework its strategy now. that the FDA granted final approval for the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, an approval it called “fraud.”
“It is neither safe nor effective,” he said of the vaccine.