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In today's Morning Brief, we have the story of feed stores in Alberta dealing with a wave of demand for ivermectin due to misinformation that suggests the livestock dewormer can be used to treat COVID-19 in humans.

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Alberta feed stores inundated with calls for ivermectin over false claims livestock dewormer treats COVID-19

Alberta feed stores say they're receiving a deluge of callers asking to buy ivermectin due to misinformation that suggests the livestock dewormer can be used to treat COVID-19 in humans.

Lance Olson, manager of Lone Star Tack & Feed Inc., located just outside of Calgary, said false claims circulating about the animal medication have brought the wrong kind of attention to his business, which has taken the product off its shelves.

"It's obviously not intended for human use in any way shape or form. It's meant to get rid of worms in horses' guts … so, these people see that ivermectin liquid, they search it, our website comes up and they give us a call thinking that we can just sell it to them," Olson said.

Different forms of ivermectin are used to treat parasites, such as intestinal worms or lice, in both animals and humans. But the livestock form of the drug should never be used on humans, and parasites are not the same as viruses. COVID-19 is caused by a virus. 

The largest study in favour of ivermectin as a COVID-19 treatment was retracted after concerns about data fabrication, plagiarism and ethical breaches. 

No clinical studies have proven whether ivermectin can slow or stop the novel coronavirus from growing in human cells — but that hasn't stopped right-wing media personalities and politicians from touting it as a possible treatment or cure for COVID-19.

Alberta Health Services says its scientific advisory group has conducted a review to explore using ivermectin; the drug is not approved to treat COVID-19 in the province.

Dr. Michael Chatenay, a general surgeon at Grey Nuns Community Hospital in Edmonton, said last week he treated a COVID-positive patient who asked for ivermectin.

"I was, to be honest, shocked but not surprised because the conspiracy theory websites and social media have been abuzz with this crazy theory," Chatenay said. "We just tell them that there's no proven benefit." Read more on this story here.

Power out to all of New Orleans, 1st death reported as Ida hammers Louisiana

(Eric Gay/The Associated Press)

A man passes by a section of roof that was blown off a building in the French Quarter by Hurricane Ida winds in New Orleans on Sunday. Ida made landfall as one of the most powerful storms ever to hit the U.S., knocking out power to the entire city and causing flooding. The storm is also being blamed for at least one death. Read more about the impact of the storm.

In brief

Canada will use economic aid as leverage to help ensure the safe passage of those hoping to flee Afghanistan, Foreign Affairs Minister Marc Garneau said as an agreement with the Taliban was announced Sunday. "We're working through various channels, along with many other countries, to speak to the Taliban and to get them to agree to a very fundamental demand, which is that all Afghans who wish to leave the country should be able to do so," Garneau told CBC chief political correspondent Rosemary Barton in an interview on Rosemary Barton Live Sunday. Minutes after that interview, a joint statement by 98 countries, including Canada, said an agreement had been reached with the Taliban ensuring that departures from the country could continue. Read more on this story here.

WATCH | Garneau accepts some criticism of evacuation efforts in Afghanistan: 

Garneau accepts some criticism of evacuation efforts in Afghanistan

10 months ago
Duration 1:57

For the second time in a week, Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau has had a campaign event disrupted by protesters shouting obscenities, uttering death threats against the prime minister, and hurling racist and misogynist insults at people of colour and women in his protective detail. While making a stump speech to promote his party's climate change policies in Cambridge, Ont., on Sunday the Liberals were forced to delay Trudeau's appearance for an hour because of the disruptions. When the event did start, it was disrupted by honking horns and foul and threatening language hurled from a crowd of people — almost all of whom were unmasked and were not maintaining physical distance from one another. Asked if he felt he could continue to hold campaign events safely, Trudeau said his message on climate change and vaccination was not one he would walk away from. "No, I'm not going to back down on a message that Canadians know is the right path forward, and that's why Canadians need to choose to move Canada forward in this pivotal time," he said. Read more about the protests

WATCH | Angry crowds disrupt another Trudeau campaign event: 

Angry crowds disrupt another Trudeau campaign event

10 months ago
Duration 3:09

Political parties and candidates will not be the only groups spending big in this election campaign. "Third parties" are also in the mix and will be hoping to shape the political conversation, get their issue prioritized and build up or tear down other political actors. Third parties get far less attention than the big political organizations that will eventually send MPs to Ottawa, but they can still play a significant role in influencing debates and campaigns. So what do they do? In general, third parties can be any Canadian individual or organization that participates in political activities during the election period (from the day the election is called to election day), as long as they are not registered political parties, electoral district associations or candidates. During the election, third parties must register with Elections Canada once they've spent $500 on regulated activities. So far, just under 50 entities have registered as third parties in this election. Read more on third parties.

If you have a question about the federal election, send us an email at We're answering as many as we can leading up to election day. Today: What you need to know about getting time off work to vote.

After a near miss of the podium early at the Tokyo Paralymic Games, Canada's Danielle Dorris swam to a silver medal today. Dorris, 18, of Moncton, N.B., put up a speedy time of one minute 21.91 seconds in the women's S7 100-metre backstroke event. Mallory Weggemann of the United States won the gold, passing Dorris toward the end of the race to log a time of 1:21.27. American Julia Gaffney, the world-record holder, finished in third. Read more on the medal for Dorris here.

Palliative care, which aims to ease suffering and improve quality of life, is in short supply. A Canadian Institute for Health Information report found that most Canadians with a terminal illness would choose to die at home if they could access palliative care, but only 15 per cent are able to do so. "If we're behind in one area, it's really giving the support to family caregivers that is required to allow a successful home death," said Prof. Barbara Pesut, who studies equitable access to end-of-life care and holds the Canada Research Chair Canada in health, ethics and diversity. Pesut says different jurisdictions have come up with some creative ways to tackle the problem in recent years. Among them are programs that enable paramedics to provide care to palliative care patients at home, as well as invaluable support to their families. Read more here about the paramedics.

Edmonton is famously home to video game giant Bioware, which planted roots there in 1995 and grew to prominence after a slew of highly regarded video game blockbusters like the Dragon Age and Mass Effect series. In more recent years, Bioware has been joined by other well-known studios like Improbable and Beamdog. But a scene of smaller, independent game developers has grown in Edmonton's fertile gaming soil, leveraging a ready talent pool and supportive community to create a space for hobbyists, full-time professionals and everything in between. The Edmonton Screen Industries Office estimates there are now around 75 indie game developers in the city. Read more about the city's video game industry.

Now for some good news to start your Monday: Leah O'Donnell says when her son Brody Neville came out as gay this spring, the 12-year-old lost many of his friends. That made the prospect of celebrating his birthday this year a sad one. So she put a call out to the community to show him love, posting about his situation on Facebook. And turn out they did. Dozens of friends, family, strangers — and yes, some drag performers strutting to Born This Way — filled a park near Ranchlands Community Centre in northwest Calgary on Saturday. When Neville arrived, he initially thought it was an unusually large crowd waiting for the ice cream truck. When he realized he was the guest of honour, he wrapped his mom into a giant hug. "Thank you everybody for this, this is the best day of my life," a grinning Neville told the crowd. Read more about the birthday celebration.

Front Burner: Theranos's Elizabeth Holmes goes on trial

Jury selection in the trial of Elizabeth Holmes gets underway this week. The former CEO of Theranos was once the darling of the tech world for her promise to revolutionize blood testing. Now, charged with defrauding Theranos's patients and investors, she faces up to 20 years in prison.

Today on Front Burner, ABC's tech correspondent and host of The Dropout podcast, Rebecca Jarvis, on what to expect from the trial, and its potential reverberations in Silicon Valley.

Today in history: August 30

1901: British engineer Cecil Booth patents the first commercially produced vacuum cleaner. His gigantic creation was mounted on wheels and parked outside the houses being cleaned. 

1971: The Progressive Conservatives led by Peter Lougheed beat the Social Credit party in an Alberta provincial election. The Tory victory ends 36 years of Social Credit administrations in Alberta and it began a Tory dynasty that ran unbroken until 2015.

1976: The Manitoba liquor control commission is ordered to pay the federal government $300,000 in the first case of a provincial agency fined for violating federal wage and price controls.

2000: The last remaining victims to be compensated for hepatitis C infection through tainted blood approve a $79-million deal with the Canadian Red Cross.

With files from The Canadian Press, The Associated Press and Reuters

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