U.S. President Donald Trump is defending his promotion and personal use of an anti-malaria drug as a medication against COVID-19.
"This is an individual decision to make,”Trump said, adding that the decades-old drug, hydroxychloroquine, has a "great reputation.” The president has tested negative for COVID-19 several times.
There is no solid scientific evidence that the drug can prevent or treat the disease caused by the coronavirus, which has killed an estimated 321,999 people globally.
A retrospective analysis based on data from the U.S. Veterans Health Administration determined that the drug as a treatment for COVID-19 -- combined with the antibiotic azithromycin or not -- not only may not help mitigate the virus's effect, but it may also increase overall mortality.
In a reference to that study, the president declared Tuesday "it was a Trump enemy statement.”
During a Cabinet meeting later that day, Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert Wilkie criticized the document as not peer reviewed.
Trump said "thousands and thousands” of front-line health care workers are taking hydroxychloroquine and it is endorsed by "many, many doctors.”
"It doesn't hurt people,” having been used as a treatment for malaria and lupus, Trump said. "I think it gives you an additional level of safety.”
The president, during the Cabinet meeting, said, "it doesn't seem to have any impact on me.”
Physicians, however, say there are serious risks associated with taking the drug, including the threat it could interfere with heart rhythm.
Source : VOA