Far-Right Health Care Companies Made Millions Prescribing Unproven Covid Remedies

Hacked data shows the lucrative operation promoted by a prominent far-right organization.

Photo illustration: Elise Swain/The Intercept; Photos: Getty Images

As the national push to vaccinate people against Covid-19 continues, hundreds of thousands of hacked documents show how a group of doctors is explicitly pushing unproven and potentially dangerous alternatives on people hesitant to follow public health authorities’ recommendations to get vaccinated, wear a mask, and socially distance. This week on Intercepted: Nausicaa Renner, The Intercept’s Washington editor, and Micah Lee, director of information security for The Intercept, discuss how a network of right-wing health care companies have been charging millions from people around the U.S. by promoting, prescribing, and selling unproven and ineffective medications for Covid-19. Lee, who received a trove of records from an anonymous hacker, was able to break down the complex network of organizations and companies involved in the operation. At the heart of it is America’s Frontline Doctors, a group of far-right doctors led anti-vaccine physician Simone Gold that promotes and prescribes unproven medications like hydroxychloroquine and ivermectin. The data Lee received not only shows how profitable the operation is, but also how wide the falsehoods pushed by this organization have spread.

[Introductory music.]

Jeremy Scahill: This is Intercepted.

Nausicaa Renner: I’m Nausicaa Renner, Washington editor with The Intercept.

In the past year, there’s been something missing from coverage of the coronavirus pandemic — a hole at the center of the story.

We’ve heard a lot about covid deniers: people who think the pandemic is fake, or that covid isn’t a big deal, or that the vaccines that are saving literally thousands of lives are actually “biological agents” — or something?

Simone Gold: We don’t need the CEOs of big companies forcing experimental biological agents on anyone.

Sky News: A vaccine may be with us, but it comes with a flare-up in the age-old struggle with anti-vaxxers whose damaging narratives appear to be growing in strength.

Brian Williams: You’re about to hear from a doctor and a nurse, medical professionals who have had contact with patients. They happen to be anti-vaxxers and conspiracy theorists.

Palm Beach Resident: Do you want to become known for communist dictators? Is this the legacy you want to be known for?

Simone Gold: This is a human rights issue that we cannot mandate human beings take experimental agents. Always use the word experiment when you talk about this. Always. The socialists win the language wars, right?

NR: But it’s been a mystery as to why some people on the right have been pushing such a damaging narrative. Why push people not to get Covid vaccines and instead to take drugs that are ineffective against the disease? What do they get out of it?

Maybe we should have guessed.

The answer is money.

Anderson Cooper: A major setback in the hopes that the drug hydroxychloroquine could be used as a possible treatment for coronavirus: A clinical study indicates the drug touted by President Trump does not work and in fact may have a high death risk. 

Lana Zak: I want to begin by discussing ivermectin which has been circulating on social media as a type of alternative, unproven treatment for Covid. Actual medical studies have shown, so far, that it does nothing to treat Covid-19. But demand is still spiking. 

NR: This year, doctors associated with a right-wing network have been consulting with people across the U.S. promoting and prescribing some of these drugs. And that network of healthcare providers is making millions.

Micah Lee: I’m Micah Lee, I’m the director of information security at The Intercept.

NR: Micah has been reporting on this network of right-wing doctors and the platforms they’ve been using.

He was recently provided with a bunch of data.

ML: So I was contacted by a hacker — who is anonymous, I don’t know their identity — but they told me they hacked these companies, Cadence Health and Ravkoo, and asked if I was interested in the data, and said that these are the companies the America’s Frontline Doctors are using to basically sell people quack Covid cures. And they sent me a lot of data: hundreds of thousands of patient records from Cadence Health, and hundreds of thousands of prescription records from the pharmacy Ravkoo.

NR: That’s a lot of names. For those of us who don’t follow Covid conspiracy groups or online medical services, let’s start from the beginning:

[Musical interlude.]

ML: There’s a group called America’s Frontline Doctors and they formed in the middle of 2020 during the pandemic. 

Doctor: We will continue to stand for liberty. 

Doctor: We will continue to speak the truth. 

Doctor: We are dedicated. 

Doctor: We are united. 

Doctor: We are America’s Frontline Doctors.

ML: And they’ve spent the whole pandemic lying to the public about the safety of vaccines, basically saying there are alternate treatments for Covid-19 when the science just doesn’t back that up. 

The group’s founder, Simone Gold, she is a physician from California.

Simone Gold: And I come before you on behalf of America’s Frontline Doctors, which is a volunteer physician organization that we started.

ML: She still has her physician’s license. I know that there’s a movement of people trying to get some accountability on her.

SG: I’ve never seen anything like this where we have groups of physicians or scientists and government bureaucrat agencies, essentially lying to the American people and people across the world.

ML: She is partially known because she got arrested for storming the Capitol on January 6. So she is the founder of this group and the main spokesperson.

SG: So let’s talk about these, what I call, I think it’s most properly called experimental biological agents, you might hear me use that phrase, definitely you should not be calling this the Covid-19 vaccine.

ML: People have known that this has been going on for a long time. There’s always snake oil salesmen, and there always have been, but I think that what this story really shows is the major financial incentive behind it. One of the things that America’s Frontline Doctors does is they actually have a big button on their website that says “Get medication.”

SG: And we made getting hydroxychloroquine available for the entire nation by going to our website, then you can consult with a telemedicine doctor, whether you have Covid, or you don’t have Covid, or you just worried about getting Covid, you can get yourself a prescription and they mail it to you.

ML: First they spread a lot of misinformation about medication that they claim is cures. And then they offer a way for people to get it, and you click “get medication,” and you go to their telemedicine partners’ website — there’s an intake form and then you put in your credit card and pay $90. 

Then after that you get a call from a physician that prescribes the other medicines you want. And then those prescriptions get filled by a pharmacy. And it turns out that those $90 payments make a lot of money and also so do those drug sales.

NR: Yeah, when you put it all together, how much money were they actually making off of this and who is profiting?

ML: So we have data from two companies that were hacked, Cadence Health and Ravkoo. Cadence Health is all the patient records, so we saw that 255,000 people were referred to Cadence Health from America’s Frontline Doctors. We have two months of this data, and these two months of this data from mid-July to mid-September 72,000 people paid these $90 consultations. And so we estimated that they made $6.7 million for phone consultations — and that’s just for the consultations, that’s not actually for selling the actual medicine. That was more money.

NR: And we should note that the AP also reported that lots of people were paying that $90 for a telemedicine consultation and then never even getting a call back.

ML: Yeah, I actually got a handful of people after we published the story, responding to my tweets on Twitter saying: Yeah. I paid $90 and they never called me! This is crap. 

So from what we can tell from looking at archives of America’s Frontline Doctors’ website and doing a bunch of other similar research, we found that the data that we have started July 16, but that America’s Frontline Doctors actually started doing this, selling consultations, in January. So that means that between January and July, we just don’t have that data. They were making like over $3 million a month in the last two months of data that we have. And we don’t have the first seven months of data,

NR: Right. And we also know that this other company, Ravkoo, the pharmacy distributing these prescriptions, filled upwards of $8 million.

ML: Yeah, $8.5 million, is what we could tell from the hacked data. So that from Ravkoo there were a few pieces of data. But the main one that we used was this basically spreadsheet of 340,000 prescriptions. And the vast majority of prescriptions that this pharmacy was filling were for these quack remedies. 

And so we could tell that Ravkoo charged people $4.7 million for ivermectin, $2.4 million for azithromycin, $1.2 million for hydroxychloroquine, and then considerably less for zinc and vitamin C. But basically these are all drugs that the far-right conspiracy world is like swearing are cures for Covid when the science just doesn’t back that up.

NR: So for Ravkoo, which is the pharmacy website, they’re the ones who are fulfilling prescriptions for hydroxychloroquine, ivermectin, you got basically a list of 340,000 prescriptions. So what did you notice about that list of prescriptions right away?

ML: So basically, that data was a huge spreadsheet. And one of the columns of the spreadsheet was the drug name. And so what I did is I basically wanted to count how many of each drug was prescribed. I wrote some code that goes through this and counts how many of each type of drug, how many prescriptions there were for it, and then I kind of simplified it to to be like: Oh, everything that is clearly ivermectin, count that as ivermectin; everything that’s clearly hydroxychloroquine, count that as hydroxychloroquine.

And after doing that, we ended up realizing that about 13 percent of the drugs were not these unproven cures for Covid. And the rest of them, like the vast majority of the drugs sold, were. So 27 percent of all of these prescriptions were for hydroxychloroquine. And the spreadsheet of data also had the cost of the drug — the cost to the patient. And so we can tell that patients paid $1.2 million for hydroxychloroquine. 19 percent was for ivermectin and patients paid $4.7 million for ivermectin. And then there’s the other big drug is azithromycin. Basically, this is one of the drugs that America’s Frontline Doctors, and then later Trump, heavily promoted as like the hydroxychloroquine cocktail is hydroxychloroquine, Azithromycin, and zinc. And so basically this combination of drugs is being sold a lot. And overall, we did the math and found out that patients paid about $8.5 million for these completely unproven cures.

NR: What I find to be so wild about this story is that we so rarely get a view of the whole thing. Like, this is the whole operation. You have the right-wing conspiracy theorist, and then you have the telemedicine website, which is charging people, and you have the distributor. And you can sort of see the connections between them. And we so rarely get a view like that.

ML: And it’s also, on America’s Frontline Doctors [and] Simone Gold’s side of things, they have an enormous social media reach. They have hundreds of thousands of followers on Twitter and Facebook, and a huge Telegram group. And one thing that I found really interesting was when we were looking into this, we discovered that there seem to be a lot of churches that are promoting America’s Frontline Doctors, and anti-vax propaganda. And so one that we found that was particularly, I don’t know, wild came from Bridge Connection Ministries. And it’s just a church newsletter with a bunch of information but in the middle of it, it has a big picture of doctors in lab coats holding hydroxychloroquine and it says: “Have you been exposed to Covid by someone who was recently vaxxed? Contact America’s Frontline Doctors for a phone consultation with an MD. They can prescribe you the Covid-19 medication you need to fight this virus.”

NR: We also have heard so much in the past four years since Trump became president in 2016 about all these people who are living in a completely different information sphere. And that, because of social media, people are getting completely different views of what politics is, what the truth is, what science is. And it’s always been, to me, a little bit of a mystery of like: Why is this happening? There’s obviously political motivations, but why is the right pouring so much into knitting together this narrative. 

And one thing that’s really been missing is the profit motive. And this so clearly shows that even though we don’t hear about it — I think people liken hydroxychloroquine to drinking bleach — like the people who are doing that are being fed misinformation. And it’s not just innocent misinformation. There are people who are standing there ready to take people’s money, and they’re like, feeding people disinformation in order to do that.

ML: I think one of the more sinister things about this is that, yeah, it’s not innocent misinformation. It’s not like: Oh, there wasn’t really a moon landing. It’s lying to people about really important health stuff in the middle of a pandemic. And one thing that’s very sad about this — because the hacked data included patient records that included everything that they filled out on their intake forms, we know people’s genders, and ages, and where they live, and things like that — [is that] the majority of people were in their 50s and 60s. People in their 50s and 60s who are really exposed to a lot of far-right misinformation and conspiracy theories. They seem to be especially kind of targeted or susceptible to this maybe. But I think that the sad thing is that they’re also way more vulnerable to Covid. The vaccine does a lot to protect people from getting hospitalized, and especially a lot to protect people from dying — like 99 percent of the deaths are people that are unvaccinated. And so if there’s all these people who are in their 50s and 60s who are unvaccinated who are spending all their money on the snake oil, it’s also putting them at a huge risk of getting really, really sick or dying from Covid.

[Musical interlude.]

ML: Simone Gold founded America’s Frontline Doctors, and actually she started a nonprofit called the Free Speech Foundation, and America’s Frontline Doctors is the project of the Free Speech Foundation. It’s basically the same thing. 

We looked at IRS documents for the Free Speech Foundation, and its fiscal sponsor is the Tea Party Patriots. And it has a $1 million annual budget, they say. So basically, they started out with a lot of money and started out as like a Tea Party Patriots Foundation project. So they are like this group that started right after Obama took office basically in order to protest Obama, and call for small-government stuff. 

There’s three different groups: There’s a 501(c)3, that’s the membership organization, the nonprofit, but then there’s also a dark money super PAC and a 501(c)4 which can endorse political candidates. 

So this was reporting I did a few months ago, where an anonymous hacker contacted me and sent me a bunch of data from the Tea Party Patriots. We also had all of their donation records. And one thing that we found from all of that data was that there were multiple years where the vast majority of all the money coming in came in from a single billionaire. So it’s very much a billionaire-funded, fake grassroots movement. So now this group did a lot of the initial groundwork to get America’s Frontline Doctors started.

So America’s Frontline Doctors was founded last summer. And there’s been a bunch of reporting about where the idea came from. And it looks like there is this conference call between a senior staffer of Trump’s re-election campaign, and then there’s a Republican activist group called CNP Action, where Trump really wanted to rapidly reopen the economy but the CDC was saying: No, we need to have shutdowns, and we need to have all sorts of restrictions on businesses. And they basically were talking about how people trust doctors, so what we need is some extremely pro-Trump doctors to go on TV and just say that Trump is right about everything. And that’s kind of how it started. Simone Gold turned out to be that doctor that was the main figurehead of that movement. And so now, a year and a half into the pandemic, they’ve turned it into this big money-making racket.

[Musical interlude.]

ML: So one of the main drugs that they’ve been pushing is hydroxychloroquine. And early on in the pandemic there was some hope that this drug could be an effective treatment. But then it quickly became clear after a bunch of studies that it really wasn’t. There’s been several studies with large sample sizes. And basically, they had two groups of people — they gave people the drug, they gave people placebos — and it turned out that for people who don’t have Covid, it doesn’t make any effect on whether or not they got Covid. And for people who do have Covid, it doesn’t have any effect on whether or not they get hospitalized or die. So basically, it’s just shown to be ineffective. And it also can have some serious side effects, including heart problems. 

But nevertheless, it was promoted by Trump — it was enthusiastically promoted by Trump — and a lot of people ended up taking it. And even now, it’s still getting prescribed by quacks like this, even though it just doesn’t work.

NR: Yeah, I was really shocked by this, because I sort of thought that we had passed the hydroxychloroquine news cycle. I mean ivermectin we’ve heard a lot about this summer, but it seemed like hydroxychloroquine was sort of this remnant of the Trump era. And I was really surprised to see how many people are still requesting to have it prescribed to them.

ML: Yeah, but I do think you’re right that ivermectin is a lot more popular right now. And it’s also a lot more profitable right now. Based on our data, the pharmacy Ravkoo made $4.7 million selling ivermectin, as compared to $1.2 million selling hydroxychloroquine. I think ivermectin started to get really popular around when the Delta variant was taking off. And basically all of the health authorities — the Who, National Institute of Health, and the CDC, and the FDA — are all basically saying: We don’t have enough data to determine if this is useful or not.

NR: And even more than that, the most damaging thing about these medications is that they’re being hawked as a replacement for the vaccine. So people are being encouraged to not take the vaccine and to take these other things instead.

ML: The lie here is that there are effective preventions and treatments of Covid that are alternatives to the vaccine. And that’s just not true. By far the best thing that everyone can do, to keep everyone safe, to end the pandemic sooner is to get vaccinated. But ivermectin in appropriate human doses shouldn’t be that harmful, but the CDC actually had to issue a health advisory, because people were taking way too much of it. And a lot of the reasons are because they were getting the horse version and following the instructions as if they were a horse, and then getting really sick.

[Musical interlude.]

NR: The other implication of your story is that the regulations around telemedicine loosened during the pandemic, so we don’t know exactly how many more of these sites there could be, or how many more pharmacies are profiting by distributing these medicines. And I find that to be really scary. It’s like we sort of came across this set of operations, but how many others are there? We have no idea.

ML: Yeah, we have no idea. I mean, I think that this is one of the bigger groups out there doing it. When you look in antivax forums where people are desperately trying to figure out how they can get ivermectin, people are always mentioning America’s Frontline Doctors. But a lot of times, they’re just like: I tried them. I couldn’t get through, or they didn’t call me back, or like, I got a prescription but the pharmacy never filled it. And this is kind of what drove them to start buying the version of ivermectin that is for animals. And so this is why they’re like: Always just have your horse medicine on hand, just so that you have it in case you get Covid or something.

NR: Is there any hope for regulation of this kind of website? Who’s in charge of that?

ML: Yeah, so I have been talking to a bunch of people who have been trying to regulate these doctors. Every state has a medical board, and it’s the medical board’s responsibility to discipline doctors. And there have been a bunch of attempts to do this, but so far, during the pandemic, none of the doctors that have been basically selling these fake cures have had any discipline yet. 

There’s a new group called No License For Disinformation. They wrote an op-ed in the Washington Post recently, specifically about Simone Gold and America’s Frontline Doctors, they were calling on medical boards to revoke the licenses of quack doctors that are just profiting off of the pandemic. 

And it turns out that medical boards seem to be extremely underfunded and they also seem to be extremely slow. I was just reading about the California Medical Board, and they get something like 10,000 complaints a year, and they only have the capacity to address 1,000 of them. And each complaint takes, on average, a year and a half to address.

NR: Yeah, that’s insane. 

Well, first, I guess you should say that it was really difficult to figure out exactly who was running these companies? 

ML: Yeah!

NR: America’s Frontline Doctors is extremely prominent, and it’s easy to figure out who’s associated with them, but when it came to the specific companies, we had to look at corporate records and find CEOs who are not well-known people at all.

ML: Yeah, it was confusing because we actually spent a lot of time digging into historical WHOIS data, which is basically the data that describes the ownership of domain names. And so we started out just knowing: OK, SpeakWithAnMD.com, who is behind this? CadenceHealth.us, who is behind this? When you go and look up the WHOIS records, they’re all behind anonymizing proxy things; you can’t see it. 

So we had to pay services that regularly check WHOIS data and then keep records of historical data to be like: Oh, well, it looks like a year ago, they had this information in the WHOIS records. So it was kind of difficult tracking down who the owners of these companies were.

For Ravkoo, the CEO is Alpesh Patel. And I ended up actually finding a phone number for him and calling him on the phone and explaining that his online pharmacy was compromised. We have all of these prescription records. And then I wanted to just ask him questions about his relationship with America’s Frontline Doctors, with Encore Telemedicine. And at first, he was super dismissive. And he was like: No, this isn’t possible. We have a secure platform. And once I convinced him that it actually was hacked, I sent him a screenshot of the administrator interface that my source had sent me, he was basically just like: Oh, I have to deal with HIPAA compliance stuff. This is more important than whatever your journalism is. And then he hung up on me.

But then later he called back and he ended up telling me a bunch of stuff, and kind of talking about answering some of the questions I was asking, until he kind of was just like: OK, I have to go. 

And then he just wouldn’t respond to me anymore. And eventually I got an email from his lawyer saying: If you have any more questions about your journalism, go through me instead.

NR: And the other platform, Cadence Health, has a CEO named Roque Espinal. He said they’re not directly profiting from this. What else did he have to say?

ML: Roque Espinal. I got him on the phone. And this was really interesting, because I explained this whole situation. And he said that he had no idea that this was going on. Actually what he said is: “I’m totally flabbergasted. I had to look up exactly who these people were. I’m fully vaccinated. My children are fully vaccinated. I’m trying to make heads and tails of this right now. I don’t want to be associated with any crap like that, none of that quackery that’s going on.” 

And so basically, it seems that America’s Frontline Doctors is partnered with Encore Telemedicine, which is basically on Encore’s website — Encore runs the website, SpeakWithAnMD.com. And then SpeakWithAnMD.com, or Encore, is basically paying Cadence Health for technology services for running the telemedicine platform. And Cadence Health is the one that got hacked. And so what Espinal told me is that he just started this company with this telemedicine platform, Encore was his first and only customer — they haven’t even really fully launched, he says — and he had no idea that this was going on. He just had a customer that needed a telemedicine platform. 

After I talked to him, that day, the day before we published the story, he basically completely dropped Encore as a client. So the day before we published the story, the telemedicine website went down. That was pretty interesting because it’s actually up now; it came up like a few days ago. But it was basically down for a week and I did the math: On average, they were making $113,000 a day on these $90 consultations, which means being down for a week, they lost $800,000.

NR: Just to make it clear, we only know how much these companies are charging patients for telemedicine consultations and for prescriptions; we don’t actually know what their net profit is. But still — charging $113,000 per day, doing $90 consultations is wild.

ML: Yeah, that’s like a pretty good salary — a day.

NR: It feels like it’s been like a year of hacks of right-wing sites. There’s the Epik hack, the Gab hack; you have received hacks of this healthcare data and data from the Tea Party Patriots, the Oath Keepers. So what’s happening?

ML: I mean, I don’t know it’s sort of like the golden age of hacktivism right now. And it’s kind of absurd, because I’m just drowning in data sets. There’s just so many hacks going on and so much data that is like out there to be able to be researched.

Anne-Marie Green: Fallout continues after a hacking group named Anonymous took responsibility for a massive data breach of Epik, an internet company that registers website domains.

ML: So Epik is mostly a domain-name registrar. So like a company that sells domain names, but they also sell web hosting and other similar services. But they are this company that has been really kind of notorious for working closely with neo-Nazis and right-wing extremists. Like they briefly ran the domain name for The Daily Stormer, which is for, for decades, one of the biggest neo-Nazi sites on the internet, and they they do hosting stuff for Gab and for Parler. And so basically like all of these very extremist groups use Epik, because the CEO is Rob Monster, he’s pretty sympathetic to these ideologies and just won’t take anything down.

Rob Monster: Some of you are probably familiar with the Southern Poverty Law Center. I was immediately named to their hatewatch. If you go to Wikipedia, there are articles about me and about Epik, that are a catalogue of collective wisdom of a manufactured consensus of a highly liberal media that would like to condemn anybody who is basically engaged in a system of supporting what they consider to be wrong speak.

ML: And so they got hacked: They got hacked really badly. This is one of the biggest, most major hacks that I’ve seen, where there’s 10 years of records. The hack data includes the real names behind all these domains. And so you can see a lot of Proud Boy websites have been exposed, the people behind them and things like that. 

So Anonymous has taken credit. And Anonymous has had like three different enormous releases of data with like, like hundreds of gigabytes of data. But the most recent one included a backup of Texas GOP.org, from September 9, or something like that. By looking at the data, I was able to basically restore the backup, and then I can just click through their website as if I was an administrator on Texas GOP.org. And we found there’s just massive amounts of private information on there, too, because they have these forums where everyone who signs up for their mailing list. They had a careers page where we have over 1,000 resumes for people applying for jobs with the Texas Republican Party. And so that was definitely very interesting.

NR: And so was the hack of this healthcare patient data, is it associated with all these other hacks? Or is it just kind of part of a loose movement of people doing this?

ML: I don’t know. I think it’s part of a loose movement of hacktivism. I think that there are a handful of different groups and different people that are very good hackers that are hacking things right now and either publishing it or sending it to journalists. And I think that this is just one of them.

NR: I also found it really interesting that the hacker seems to have some sense of ethics around patient privacy, because this hacker did not just go out and publish patient records. They sent them to a journalist.

ML: I got the impression from talking to this person that they didn’t want all of this stuff to become public. What they wanted to do was to expose the pandemic profiteers; expose who’s making money off of us. 

And oh, actually, one interesting thing about this whole story is HIPAA, the health care privacy law in the United States that basically requires health care providers to protect patient data, one thing that’s kind of funny is that recently in the news, a lot of anti-vaxxers were making these huge deals, claiming that it was a violation of HIPAA to ask if you’re vaccinated before you’re allowed to enter a business.

Carl Higbie: They feel entitled to scrutinize other people’s discretion, whether it be masks or social, social distancing, or vaccinations. This is a seriously slippery slope, folks. It also has massive HIPAA concerns. 

So I’m out. I’m out on your big-government malarkey. It’s garbage. I’m gonna do me and you do you. If you don’t like me walking around without a mask, stay home. And let freedom ring, baby.

ML: And that’s not a violation of HIPAA at all. That doesn’t have anything to do with HIPAA. But these websites were basically failing to protect patient data. So Ravkoo and Cadence Health were ridiculously easy to hack. They were kind of wide open. So that potentially could be a HIPAA violation. The Ravkoo website, the hacker told me that they made an account on the website, anyone can make an account, and then they just found the secret super-admin URL. And if you go to that URL, you’re just logged in as a super admin. And so basically, they were able to, from there, click through and view all of the data in the database. And anyone could do this, as long as you have an account, which anyone can make.

NR: Well, Micah, what do you think? Do you think that these companies are going to be able to continue to work in their own space, sort of unregulated? Or is there any hope of sort of getting them to stop?

ML: So I’m hoping that there’ll be some sort of investigation into these groups. But I don’t really know if that could happen. 

I’m hoping that the whole issue of doctors who were really just kind of hurting everybody and profiting off the pandemic, that these doctors get decertified and don’t get to keep practicing medicine. And that’s a very decentralized problem; it has to be tackled state by state. But I hope that that happens.

Also I’ve been hearing a lot of really interesting things from a lot of different people related to these companies and selling these fake cures for Covid. And so I think that there will likely be more reporting on this in the future

NR: Micah, thanks so much for joining me.

ML: Thanks. This was great.

[End credits music.]

NR: And that does it for this episode of Intercepted. Follow us on Twitter @Intercepted and on Instagram @InterceptedPodcast.

Intercepted is a production of First Look Media and The Intercept. José Olivares is Lead Producer. Supervising Producer is Laura Flynn. Betsy Reed is editor in chief of The Intercept. And Rick Kwan mixed our show. Our theme music, as always, was composed by DJ Spooky.

Until next time, I’m Nausicaa Renner.

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