Supposed therapies range from stem cell infusions to acupuncture and ozone treatments
The Federal Trade Commission announced it has sent 21 additional letters warning marketers throughout the United States to stop making unsubstantiated claims that their products and therapies can treat or prevent coronavirus (COVID-19). This is the third set of warning letters the FTC has sent to sellers of such products as part of its ongoing efforts to protect consumers from COVID-19 related scams.
The FTC previously sent warning letters to the sellers of supplements including colloidal silver, teas, essential oils, and other products pitched as scientifically proven coronavirus treatments. The letters announced today, however, address a wider range of products and supposed treatments, including some that may appear more medically sophisticated to consumers, such as acupuncture, intravenous (IV) “therapies” with high doses of Vitamin C, ozone therapy, and purported stem cell treatments. However, there is currently no scientific evidence that these products or services can treat or cure coronavirus.
The FTC sent the letters announced today to the companies and individuals listed below. The recipients are grouped based on the type of therapy, product, or service they pitched to supposedly prevent or treat coronavirus disease.
General Therapy Products, Vitamins, and Supplements:
- Abundant Life Wellness Center (homeopathic dilutions)
- Alkaline for Life at the Center for Better Bones (high-dose Vitamin C)
- Blessed Maine Herb Farm (herbal therapy)
- Ethos Natural Medicine LLC (Kratom tablets and powders)
- Fast Relief Acupuncture (acupuncture and herbal therapy)
- Greenbelt Outdoors (high-dose Vitamin C)
- Jiva Med Spa (supplements)
- Personal Health Shop (elderberry)
- REVIV (high-dose Vitamin C)
IV Therapy and Related Treatments:
- Absolute Health Clinic (IV Vitamin C; stem cell therapy)
- AwareMed (IV therapy)
- Liquivida Lounge (IV therapy; Vitamin C)
- Merge Medical Center
- Prana IV Therapy (IV Vitamin C)
- Vidaful Medicine (IV Vitamin C; stem cell therapy; ozone therapy)
- Windhorse Naturopathic Clinic (IV Vitamin C)
Stem Cell Therapy:
In the letters, the FTC states that one or more of the efficacy claims made by the marketers are unsubstantiated because they are not supported by scientific evidence, and therefore violate the FTC Act. The letters advise the recipients to immediately cease making all claims that their products can treat or cure coronavirus and to notify the FTC within 48 hours about the specific actions they have taken to address the agency’s concerns.
The letters note that if the false claims do not cease, the Commission may seek a federal court injunction and an order requiring money to be refunded to consumers.
The letters announced today are the latest round of warnings the FTC has sent to sellers of products pitched as able treat or prevent coronavirus. The Commission also has sent letters to several Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) service providers, warning them that it is illegal to aid or facilitate the transmission of pre-recorded telemarketing robocalls pitching supposed coronavirus-related products or services.
The Federal Trade Commission works to promote competition, stop deceptive and unfair business practices and scams, and educate consumers. Report fraud, scams, or bad business practices at ReportFraud.ftc.gov. Get consumer advice at consumer.ftc.gov. Also, follow the FTC on social media, subscribe to press releases, and read the FTC’s blogs.
CONTACT FOR CONSUMERS:
FTC’s Consumer Response Center
FTC MEDIA CONTACT:
Mitchell J. Katz
Office of Public Affairs
FTC STAFF CONTACT:
Bureau of Consumer Protection