‘Why no retraction?’ Obstinate Rachel Maddow hangs on to thoroughly debunked scare story

MSNBC host Rachel Maddow and a long list of liberal media outlets ran with a fake news story that reported Oklahoma hospitals were overflowing due to overdoses from the veterinary medicine ivermectin taken to treat COVID-19.

“Patients overdosing on ivermectin backing up rural Oklahoma hospitals, ambulances,” Maddow tweeted. She was referring to a headline that originally appeared at Oklahoma’s KFOR-TV news reporting that gunshot victims were having to wait to be treated because hospitals were full with ivermectin overdoses. That claim was disputed and disproven.

“’The scariest one I’ve heard of and seen is people coming in with vision loss,’ he said,” Maddow added in her tweet, quoting the doctor behind the debunked story, Jason McElyea. Maddow has yet to delete her tweet even though the story has been proven false.

Notably, social media fact-checkers have not even flagged it yet.

McElyea told KFOR, “The ERs are so backed up that gunshot victims were having hard times getting to facilities where they can get definitive care and be treated.”

“All of their ambulances are stuck at the hospital waiting for a bed to open so they can take the patient in and they don’t have any, that’s it,” McElyea claimed. “If there’s no ambulance to take the call, there’s no ambulance to come to the call.”

The doctor now says he was misquoted, according to News 9. “That original story was just a little misquoted,” the doctor said on Friday.

“As the story ran, it sounded like all of Oklahoma hospitals were filled with people who have overdosed on ivermectin and that’s not the case,” McElyea said. “The cases we are seeing, people who are overdosing on ivermectin, they are taking full strength cattle doses and coming in and that is something that could be avoided.”

The false claim of overflowing hospitals due to ivermectin was shot down by the Northeastern Hospital System which flatly denied that any of their patients had been treated for overdosing on the drug.

Northeastern Hospital System released a statement that McElyea is not an employee, “but is affiliated with a medical staffing group that provides coverage for our emergency room.”

“With that said, Dr. McElyea has not worked at our Sallisaw location in over 2 months,” noted the statement. “NHS Sequoyah has not treated any patients due to complications related to taking ivermectin. This includes not treating any patients for ivermectin overdose.”

“All patients who have visited our emergency room have received medical attention as appropriate,” said Northeastern. “Our hospital has not had to turn away any patients seeking emergency care. We want to reassure our community that our staff is working hard to provide quality healthcare to all patients. We appreciate the opportunity to clarify this issue and as always, we value our community’s support.”

INTEGRIS Hospital said in a statement that McElyea is an employee of an agency that staffs emergency departments throughout the United States including several emergency departments in rural Oklahoma.

“What we can confirm is that we have seen a handful of ivermectin patients in our emergency rooms, to include INTEGRIS Grove Hospital. And while our hospitals are not filled with people who have taken ivermectin, such patients are adding to the congestion already caused by COVID-19 and other emergencies,” the hospital group stated.

Maddow is far from alone in airing the fake news report. Rolling Stone, Newsweek, Insider, The Guardian, and The New York Daily News all reported the same story. Rolling Stone, Insider, and The Guardian have updated their reporting with Northeastern’s statement. Newsweek and The New York Daily News have not included it yet as of this writing.

Journalist Drew Holden flagged a series of tweets and articles that all ran with the fake story. Notably, Maddow not retracting her tweet is spreading a false story to millions of her followers.

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