An incident at a Tuesday Sarasota Memorial Hospital board meeting involving a doctor’s removal has sparked controversy and debate over the use of Ivermectin to treat COVID-19, however, according to a Sarasota Memorial Health Care System spokesperson, an Epoch Times contributor “mischaracterized” the event.
Here is Dr Littell’s speech! https://t.co/gS4zArlR8V
— Chris Nelson 🇺🇸 🏝 (@ReOpenChris) February 21, 2023
A journalist named Chris Nelson and an Epoch Times contributor posted a video on Twitter that showed Dr. John Littell being escorted out of a venue. The video was accompanied by a caption that said, “BREAKING! Dr. John Littell was REMOVED from a Sarasota Memorial Hospital Board Meeting after giving testimony on the effectiveness of Ivermectin in treating Covid-19!”
According to Kim Savage, the public relations manager at Sarasota Memorial Health Care System, the tweet by Nelson mischaracterized the incident. The spokesperson stated that the doctor violated decorum rules and presented a safety risk by leaving his seat in the audience and approaching a hospital board member while the board was discussing and getting ready to vote on the issue.
In the video, a police officer or security guard was shown approaching Dr. Littell and gesturing for him to move away from the board members. Later, Chris Nelson subtweeted about the incident and suggested that Dr. Littell’s attempt to thank a board member for her remarks may have been the reason for his removal.
Ivermectin is a drug that has been suggested as a possible treatment for COVID-19. At the meeting, Dr. John Littell, a veteran and board-certified family physician with 25 years of experience, gave a speech. His speech, which went beyond the allotted time, was not the reason for his removal. After his speech, the doctor approached a board member, violating the three-minute time limit for public comments.
Nelson’s tweet quickly went viral with over 1.9 million views. The misleading tweet received over 1,000+ quote tweets and more than 1,000+ replies from observers concerned that the board did not listen to the doctor’s remarks or used a “heavy-handed approach” to silence “dissent.”
In a post-meeting interview, Dr. Littell admitted he violated protocol by approaching the board member. He stated, “I have to confess, I have never been at a hospital board meeting. I thought I could walk up and say thank you.”
The incident at the Sarasota Memorial Hospital board meeting highlights the importance of following rules of etiquette and respecting safety protocols, particularly during public meetings. It also serves as a reminder that social media can quickly spread misinformation and mischaracterize events, leading to misunderstandings and public backlash.