“Just to be cautious, I separated from my family, slept in a different part of the house, and throughout the night I got fevers and sweats. And I knew what was going on,” Rogan said. “So I got up in the morning, got tested — and turns out I got covid.”
Rogan said he was now feeling “great” after “one bad day” on Sunday. After his diagnosis, he said he “immediately threw the kitchen sink” at the virus, and listed a litany of therapeutics and treatments he tried, including ivermectin, a medicine used to kill parasites in animals and humans but best known as a horse dewormer.
The treatment is one that has been promoted by conservative media figures, politicians and some doctors, but it also carries a warning from the Food and Drug Administration, which has advised against using it as a treatment for covid-19. Poison control centers have reported huge spikes of calls about ivermectin exposure.
“You are not a horse. You are not a cow. Seriously, y’all. Stop it,” the FDA tweeted last month amid an increase of people getting sick from the medicine.
“The Joe Rogan Experience” is the most popular podcast in the country, according to tracking firm Edison Research. In 2020, Spotify acquired Rogan’s podcast library in a reported $100 million deal and now exclusively licenses the series. Before he moved to Spotify, Rogan’s show had about 190 million monthly downloads.
Rogan, a stand-up comedian, is a lightning rod with a huge following. He’s hosted controversial figures on his show, including Alex Jones, who has pushed the false theory that the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting was a hoax. (Spotify eventually deleted 40 episodes from its service, including ones featuring Jones and provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos.)
During the pandemic, Rogan has used his platform to flirt with coronavirus misinformation. In April, he said young and healthy people don’t need to get vaccinated. After an outcry, he told his audience not to take his advice seriously, saying he’s not “an anti-vax person” or a doctor, but rather “a moron.”
But months later on his podcast, he lambasted the push for mass vaccinations and also questioned whether the vaccines actually prevented the spread of the virus — even as he couched his remarks, saying “this is neither pro- nor con-vaccine.”
Public health experts have said that vaccines are the most effective way of preventing the spread of the virus and are effective at preventing people from getting very sick and dying from covid-19, including the delta variant.
Rogan also slammed vaccine requirements for event spaces in New York City and said that he would offer refunds to anyone who had tickets to his Madison Square Garden show this fall and didn’t want to comply, saying he wasn’t going to “force” anyone to get vaccinated to see a “stupid comedy show.”
His comments have attracted pushback from White House officials. Anthony S. Fauci, the country’s highest-ranking expert on infectious diseases, criticized Rogan’s comments during an April interview on NBC’s “Today” show, emphasizing that young and healthy people should “absolutely” get vaccinated and that it was unvaccinated individuals who “are propagating the outbreak.”
On Wednesday, Rogan told his followers his diagnosis forced him to reschedule his upcoming show in Nashville until late October.
“My apologies to everyone, obviously it’s nothing I can control. It is what it is, crazy times we’re living in,” he said. “But a wonderful heartfelt thank you to modern medicine for pulling me out of this so quickly and easily.”