As confirmed U.S. deaths from COVID-19 topped 90,000, with over 1.5 million reported cases, President Trump shocked reporters and the medical community Monday when he claimed he’s been taking hydroxychloroquine for at least a week and a half — despite warnings from the Food and Drug Administration.
President Donald Trump: “Good things have come out about the hydroxy. A lot of good things have come out. And you’d be surprised at how many people are taking it, especially the frontline workers, before you catch it. The frontline workers, many, many are taking it. I happen to be taking it. I happen to be taking it.”
Reporter 1: “Hydroxychloroquine?”
President Donald Trump: “I’m taking it, hydroxychloroquine.”
Reporter 2: “Right now?”
Reporter 3: “When?”
President Donald Trump: “Right now, yeah.”
Reporter 3: “Yeah, when?”
President Donald Trump: “Couple of weeks ago, started taking it.”
Reporter 4: “Why, sir?”
President Donald Trump: “Because I think it’s good. I’ve heard a lot of good stories. And if it’s not good, I’ll tell you right: I’m not going to get hurt by it.”
Multiple studies have concluded that hydroxychloroquine is not an effective treatment for COVID-19 and can in fact have dangerous side effects, including a high risk of cardiac arrest. The FDA issued a warning about self-medicating with the antimalarial drug last month following Trump’s repeated remarks touting its effectiveness. On Monday, Fox News host Neil Cavuto warned viewers about the dangers posed by the drug just moments after the president’s remarks were broadcast.
Neil Cavuto: “If you are in a risky population here and you are taking this as a preventative treatment to ward off the virus, or, in a worst-case scenario, you are dealing with the virus and you are in this vulnerable population, it will kill you.”