CHICAGO — Veronica Wolski, a Chicago woman known as a prominent QAnon follower who flew flags and banners on highway bridges, has passed away from COVID-19 at the age of 64.
Wolski’s death comes after several QAnon followers were repeatedly pressuring AMITA Health Resurrection Medical Center, located in Norwood Park, to prescribe Wolski ivermectin, a livestock drug that has not been proven to prevent or treat COVID-19.
The hospital faced a slew of phone calls and emails in recent weeks.
Ivermectin is approved to treat parasites in livestock and sometimes humans, according to the FDA. The CDC said there’s been a significant increase in filling ivermectin prescriptions during the pandemic. During one week in August, more than 88,000 prescriptions were filled — compared to an average of 3,600 per week before the pandemic.
“If freedom comes with a caveat, it is not freedom,” Wolski said in her last video. “I have never once worn a mask, I have called the police on people who have tried to make me wear masks. I have never relinquished my freedoms, and therefore — I don’t have to fight to get them back.”
Federal regulators, the American Medical Association and the maker of ivermectin are warning people not to take the medication to fight COVID-19.
During a recent Facebook Q & A session, Chicago’s top doctor echoed those concerns.
“First and foremost, do not ever, please, take any medicine that is formulated for animals,” said Dr. Allison Arwady. “It’s dangerous and it can really be a problem.”
The Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office confirmed Wolski’s death was due to pneumonia caused from a COVID-19 infection, with hypothyroidism as a contributing factor.