Trump defends his use of unproven treatment for coronavirus

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump on Tuesday defended his use of a prescription malaria drug to try to ward off the novel coronavirus despite medical warnings, saying it was up to individuals to make their own decisions. Without offering any evidence, Trump told reporters during a visit to the U.S.

Reuters May 20, 2020 02:11:16 IST
Trump defends his use of unproven treatment for coronavirus

Trump defends his use of unproven treatment for coronavirus

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump on Tuesday defended his use of a prescription malaria drug to try to ward off the novel coronavirus despite medical warnings, saying it was up to individuals to make their own decisions.

Without offering any evidence, Trump told reporters during a visit to the U.S. Capitol that he thinks hydroxychloroquine "gives you an additional level of safety," adding: "People are going to have to make up their own mind."

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has warned about potential serious side effects with the use of the drug in COVID-19 patients.

Vice President Mike Pence, whose press secretary, Katie Miller, has contracted the coronavirus, told Fox News Channel in an interview that he was not taking the drug.

"I'm not but I would never begrudge any American taking the advice of their physician," Pence said, according to a transcript of the interview. He noted the FDA had approved "off-label use" of the drug when prescribed by a physician.

"My physician has not recommended that but I wouldn't hesitate to take the counsel of my doctor. Any American should do likewise," he said.

Weeks ago, Trump had promoted the drug as a potential treatment based on a positive report about its use against the virus, but subsequent studies found that it was not helpful.

The White House physician, Sean Conley, said in a memo released late on Monday that he and the president had discussed the evidence for and against taking the drug and had agreed that "the potential benefit from treatment outweighed the relative risks."

(Reporting by Steve Holland, Tim Ahmann and Jeff Mason; Editing by David Gregorio)

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.

Updated Date:

TAGS:

also read

France, Germany to agree to NATO role against Islamic State - sources
| Reuters
World

France, Germany to agree to NATO role against Islamic State - sources | Reuters

By Robin Emmott and John Irish | BRUSSELS/PARIS BRUSSELS/PARIS France and Germany will agree to a U.S. plan for NATO to take a bigger role in the fight against Islamic militants at a meeting with President Donald Trump on Thursday, but insist the move is purely symbolic, four senior European diplomats said.The decision to allow the North Atlantic Treaty Organization to join the coalition against Islamic State in Syria and Iraq follows weeks of pressure on the two allies, who are wary of NATO confronting Russia in Syria and of alienating Arab countries who see NATO as pushing a pro-Western agenda."NATO as an institution will join the coalition," said one senior diplomat involved in the discussions. "The question is whether this just a symbolic gesture to the United States

China's Xi says navy should become world class
| Reuters
World

China's Xi says navy should become world class | Reuters

BEIJING Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday called for greater efforts to make the country's navy a world class one, strong in operations on, below and above the surface, as it steps up its ability to project power far from its shores.China's navy has taken an increasingly prominent role in recent months, with a rising star admiral taking command, its first aircraft carrier sailing around self-ruled Taiwan and a new aircraft carrier launched last month.With President Donald Trump promising a US shipbuilding spree and unnerving Beijing with his unpredictable approach on hot button issues including Taiwan and the South and East China Seas, China is pushing to narrow the gap with the U.S. Navy.Inspecting navy headquarters, Xi said the navy should "aim for the top ranks in the world", the Defence Ministry said in a statement about his visit."Building a strong and modern navy is an important mark of a top ranking global military," the ministry paraphrased Xi as saying.