I took anti-malarial drug HCQ for a week as preventive measure: Trump

Prashasti Awasthi Mumbai | Updated on May 19, 2020

US President Donald Trump speaks during a news conference. (File photo)   -  Bloomberg

United States President Donald Trump took the whole world by surprise when he disclosed that he has been taking anti-malarial drug hydroxychloroquine for a week. The malarial drug has not been approved by Trump’s own administration, Agence France Presse reported.

Trump said that he has been taking this drug as a preventive measure “for about a week and a half.” However, Trump has shown no symptoms of the virus and was tested negative for it.

"I take a pill every day," he said, adding that he combines this with zinc. When the reporters asked him the reason behind his intake, he said: "Because I think it's good. I've heard a lot of good stories."

Trump seems to have been fixated on the drug and promoting its use, even if some doctors think it does not work for coronavirus patients and US government regulators warn it has "not been shown to be safe."

"You'd be surprised at how many people are taking it, especially the front-line workers before you catch it. The front-line workers -- many, many are taking it. I happen to be taking it," he said to reporters attending a White House meeting devoted to the struggling restaurant industry.

"I'm taking it, hydroxychloroquine, right now, yeah. A couple of weeks ago, I started taking it," he said as cited in the AFP report.

Trump informed that his dosage of the medicine was approved by the White House physician. However, he later said that he, not the doctor, took the first step.

"I asked him, 'what do you think?' He said, 'if you'd like it.' I said 'yeah, I'd like it.'"

Trump further noted that he has received many "positive calls" from people, whom he did not identify, telling him about the malaria drug. He mentioned a letter he'd received from a New York doctor, also unidentified, who reported giving the medicine to hundreds of patients and "I haven't lost one."

However, the government's Food and Drug Administration has warned against the intake of the hydroxychloroquine for either prevention or treatment of the coronavirus. It has noted the side effects including "serious heart rhythm problems in patients with Covid-19." Only emergency use is authorized under temporary rules, AFP report added.

Earlier this month, a medical paper out of New York suggested that combining hydroxychloroquine with the dietary supplement zinc sulfate, which has antiviral properties, could create a more effective treatment against coronavirus.


Published on May 19, 2020

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