Houston Hospital Suspends Doctor for 'Spreading Dangerous Misinformation' About COVID

Dr. Mary Bowden, an ear, nose and throat specialist, vocally protested vaccine mandates and promoted ivermectin on her Twitter account

Houston Methodist Hospital
Photo: Brandon Bell/Getty Images

A Houston hospital temporarily suspended a doctor for "spreading dangerous misinformation" about COVID-19 vaccines and treatments to her patients and on social media.

Dr. Mary Bowden, an ear, nose and throat specialist who recently joined the staff at Houston Methodist Hospital, has protested against vaccine mandates and claimed that unvaccinated patients have been discriminated against at the hospital for their choice. She also has repeatedly promoted ivermectin as a treatment for COVID-19, despite lack of evidence that it is safe and effective, and despite warnings from the Food and Drug Administration against its use.

Bowden, who also runs her own private practice in the area, sent an email saying that she will "only accept new patients who are unvaccinated because they are being marginalized," the Houston Chronicle reported.

In her emails, obtained by the Chronicle, Bowden said that "all the data I have collected suggests that the vaccine is not working." In another email, she claimed that Houston Methodist was not treating unvaccinated patients, which she later recounted.

Houston Methodist denied that they turn away unvaccinated patients in a statement shared with PEOPLE.

"Despite what she has posted, Houston Methodist does not and will never deny care to a patient based on vaccination status," the hospital said.

Houston Methodist suspended Bowden from admitting patients to the hospital for "spreading dangerous misinformation" and "harmful" opinions about COVID-19 vaccines and treatment, they said.

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The hospital also said that they do not agree with Bowden's views.

"Dr. Mary Bowden, who recently joined the medical staff at Houston Methodist Hospital, is using her social media accounts to express her personal and political opinions about the COVID-19 vaccine and treatment," they said. "These opinions, which are harmful to the community, do not reflect reliable medical evidence or the values of Houston Methodist, where we have treated more than 25,000 COVID-19 inpatients, and where all our employees and physicians are vaccinated to protect our patients."

"Dr. Bowden, who has never admitted a patient at Houston Methodist Hospital, is spreading dangerous misinformation which is not based in science."

PEOPLE has contacted Bowden for comment.

Bowden, who is vaccinated, told KPRC News that she is not against the COVID-19 vaccine.

"The issues with vaccines and ivermectin really go against patient autonomy and their right to choose their treatment," she said.

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