CHEYENNE — The Wyoming Board of Medicine agreed to issue a statement regarding the misuse of drugs during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Through mostly national and anecdotal reports, physicians have inappropriately been prescribing medications thought to help prevent or COVID-19 from impacting those asymptomatic to the virus but potentially in contact with someone who contracted the virus, like a family member.
Because of this, the Wyoming Board of Medicine agreed unanimously to release a statement, under the direction of the governor due to consistent collaboration among government entities during this time in an effort for cohesive messaging, warning against doing such acts.
“This board supports the AMA’s call for a stop to inappropriate prescribing and ordering, including but not limited to, chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine,” board executive director Kevin Bohnenblust read from the statement text during a meeting Thursday evening. “And includes, but is not limited to, prescribing to patients who are asymptomatic at the time of the writing of the prescription.”
Short discussion about whether to include more outlawed drugs was satisfied by the “including but not limited to” phrase and was passed unanimously by the board, who met via teleconference.
“Generally speaking, the board is not able to prohibit physicians and PAs from what is within the scope of their licenses without individual limitations, that sort of thing, unless it’s something very broad,” Bohnenblust said. “But what the board is able to do is it is able to take action if a licensee engages in, say, overutilization, fraud, prescribing for inappropriate reasons, prescribing something to a patient who is asymptomatic and doesn’t need the medication at the time.”
There’s a certain need for prophylaxis but not in this circumstance, Bohnenblust said.
“Noting that failure to meet the standard of care, inappropriate or overprescribing or overutilization, those are all provisions within the state medical practice act,” Bohnenblust said.