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Coronavirus Drug: French Researcher Reports Successful Trial Using Malaria Medicine

Donald Trump: Chloroquine Treatment for Coronavirus Showing ‘Tremendous’ Results

Postby smix » Wed Apr 15, 2020 4:40 pm

Donald Trump: Chloroquine Treatment for Coronavirus Showing ‘Tremendous’ Results
Breitbart News

URL: https://www.breitbart.com/politics/2020 ... s-results/
Category: healthNews
Published: March 19, 2020

Description: President Donald Trump promoted the use of the anti-malaria drug chloroquine at the White House on Thursday, the purpose of which is to treat people infected with the coronavirus. “We’re going to be able to make that drug available almost immediately,” Trump said at the White House press briefing on Thursday. Trump said that chloroquine was already developed, tested, and widely available to American doctors. “The nice part is it’s been around for a long time, so we know that if things don’t go as planned, it’s not going to kill anybody,” Trump said. The president also mentioned the anti-viral drug Remdesivir produced by Gilead as a possible treatment drug. FDA commissioner Stephen Hahn said that under the president’s direction he would move quickly for a chloroquine clinical trial to test its ability to treat the coronavirus. In the meantime, doctors can ask for experimental drugs to use to treat their patients as part of a “compassionate use” program. The president stated that anti-viral drugs had shown “very, very encouraging early results” in treatment tests. “I think it’s going to be very promising. It could be a game-changer,” he said. “And maybe not. Based on what I see, it could be a game-changer. They’re very powerful.”



Delingpole: Studies Claim Malaria Drug Chloroquine Effective Against Coronavirus
Breitbart News

URL: https://www.breitbart.com/politics/2020 ... ronavirus/
Category: healthNews
Published: March 18, 2020

Description: Sure this Coronavirus pandemic is a misery but I’m much more optimistic than most at the moment. Here’s one of the reasons: there’s an effective treatment already and it’s available and cheap, according to studies. Chloroquine phosphate, an old-fashioned anti-malarial drug, has shown strong results against COVID-19 infections in South Korea and China. As Anthony Watts notes here there have been at least three studies demonstrating its efficacy against the Coronavirus. Here is one, by James M Todaro and Gregory J Rigano: According to the summary:
Recent guidelines from South Korea and China report that chloroquine is an effective antiviral therapeutic treatment against Coronavirus Disease 2019. Use of chloroquine (tablets) is showing favorable outcomes in humans infected with Coronavirus including faster time to recovery and shorter hospital stay. US CDC research shows that chloroquine also has strong potential as a prophylactic (preventative) measure against coronavirus in the lab, while we wait for a vaccine to be developed. Chloroquine is an inexpensive, globally available drug that has been in widespread human use since 1945 against malaria, autoimmune and various other conditions.

It concludes:
Chloroquine can both prevent and treat malaria. Chloroquine can both prevent and treat coronavirus in primate cells (Figure 1 and Figure 2). According to South Korean and China human treatment guidelines, chloroquine is effective in treating COVID-19. Given chloroquine’s human safety profile and existence, it can be implemented today in the U.S., Europe and the rest of the world. Medical doctors may be reluctant to prescribe chloroquine to treat COVID-19 since it is not FDA approved for this use. The United States of America and other countries should immediately authorize and indemnify medical doctors for prescribing chloroquine to treat COVID-19. We must explore whether chloroquine can safely serve as a preventative measure prior to infection of COVID-19 to stop further spread of this highly contagious virus.

Here is the second study by Jianjun Gao, Zhenxue Tian, Xu Yang Abstract:
The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) virus is spreading rapidly, and scientists are endeavoring to discover drugs for its efficacious treatment in China. Chloroquine phosphate, an old drug for treatment of malaria, is shown to have apparent efficacy and acceptable safety against COVID-19 associated pneumonia in multicenter clinical trials conducted in China. The drug is recommended to be included in the next version of the Guidelines for the Prevention, Diagnosis, and Treatment of Pneumonia Caused by COVID-19 issued by the National Health Commission of the People’s Republic of China for treatment of COVID-19 infection in larger populations in the future.

Here is the third, in the journal Nature. It’s titled ‘Remdesivir and chloroquine effectively inhibit the recently emerged novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) in vitro’ Extract:
Chloroquine, a widely-used anti-malarial and autoimmune disease drug, has recently been reported as a potential broad-spectrum antiviral drug.8,9 Chloroquine is known to block virus infection by increasing endosomal pH required for virus/cell fusion, as well as interfering with the glycosylation of cellular receptors of SARS-CoV.10Our time-of-addition assay demonstrated that chloroquine functioned at both entry, and at post-entry stages of the 2019-nCoV infection in Vero E6 cells (Fig. 1c, d). Besides its antiviral activity, chloroquine has an immune-modulating activity, which may synergistically enhance its antiviral effect in vivo. Chloroquine is widely distributed in the whole body, including lung, after oral administration. The EC90 value of chloroquine against the 2019-nCoV in Vero E6 cells was 6.90 μM, which can be clinically achievable as demonstrated in the plasma of rheumatoid arthritis patients who received 500 mg administration.11Chloroquine is a cheap and a safe drug that has been used for more than 70 years and, therefore, it is potentially clinically applicable against the 2019-nCoV.

What does this mean? Essentially it means the end of the nightmare is – or ought to be – much closer than we think. It will take many, many months before a vaccine is available for COVID-19. In the meantime, this is a very effective stop-gap solution. Not only does it make those critically affected by the virus less likely to die; but it also acts as a prophylactic – that is, it is capable of stopping people from getting the disease in the first place. The reason that Chloroquine works, I understand from an expert in viral pandemics, is that enables the body to absorb more zinc. Zinc appears to be the most effective agent in disrupting the virus and preventing the ‘cytokine storm’, which is the deadly phase in which the virus tricks the body’s immune system into attacking its own healthy tissue, with often fatal consequences. Why isn’t there more excitement about this readily available treatment? One possible reason is that chloroquine is a generic drug to which no pharmaceutical company owns the patent. Big Pharma’s money and lobbying power will strive to persuade governments – and markets – that the only viable solution to the coronavirus is a vaccine. But in the short term this simply isn’t true. Nor is it clear to me that the global economy is going to survive on lockdown for as long as it takes to develop and test that vaccine – which may not even prove effective in any case. Note that point in the Todaro and Rigano paper about the need for FDA approval. There is no time to waste.



Delingpole: Chloroquine Known as Effective Against Coronavirus Since 2005
Breitbart News

URL: https://www.breitbart.com/politics/2020 ... ince-2005/
Category: healthNews
Published: March 19, 2020

Description: The world economy is collapsing because of the terror and mounting death toll caused by the Coronavirus pandemic. But the anti-malarial drug chloroquine is effective both as a prophylactic and treatment for the virus – and the medical establishment has known about this since at least the SARS coronavirus outbreak in 2005. What the hell is going on? Yesterday, I reported the existence of three studies, all claiming that chloroquine phosphate had proved effective in treating the COVID-19. This has since been confirmed by a more recent open-label non-randomised clinical trial in France by Didier Raoult​ M.D/Ph.D et al, completed just days ago. The sample was small but the results were convincing. As the summary reports:
100% of patients that received a combination of HCQ and Azithromycin tested negative and were virologically cured within 6 days of treatment. In addition, recent guidelines from South Korea and China report that hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine are effective antiviral therapeutic treatments for novel coronavirus.

But the story gets more extraordinary still. It turns out that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has known since at least 2005 that chloroquine is effective against coronaviruses. In 2005, Martin J Vincent et al published a study in Virology Journal titled 'Chloroquine is a potent inhibitor of SARS coronavirus infection and spread'. Here are its findings:
Background
Severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) is caused by a newly discovered coronavirus (SARS-CoV). No effective prophylactic or post-exposure therapy is currently available.
Results
We report, however, that chloroquine has strong antiviral effects on SARS-CoV infection of primate cells. These inhibitory effects are observed when the cells are treated with the drug either before or after exposure to the virus, suggesting both prophylactic and therapeutic advantage. In addition to the well-known functions of chloroquine such as elevations of endosomal pH, the drug appears to interfere with terminal glycosylation of the cellular receptor, angiotensin-converting enzyme 2. This may negatively influence the virus-receptor binding and abrogate the infection, with further ramifications by the elevation of vesicular pH, resulting in the inhibition of infection and spread of SARS CoV at clinically admissible concentrations.
Conclusion
Chloroquine is effective in preventing the spread of SARS CoV in cell culture. Favorable inhibition of virus spread was observed when the cells were either treated with chloroquine prior to or after SARS CoV infection. In addition, the indirect immunofluorescence assay described herein represents a simple and rapid method for screening SARS-CoV antiviral compounds.

It ought to be no surprise that chloroquine is effective against both SARS and COVID-19. After all, they are both coronaviruses and COVID-19 has often been described in medical and research sources as SARS-2. Chloroquine works by enabling the body’s cells better to absorb zinc, which is key in preventing viral RNA transcription – and disrupting the often fatal cytokine storm. As at least one person has noticed, the implications of this are enormous. If the medical establishment – including CDC – has been aware of the efficacy of chloroquine in treating coronavirus for at least 14 years, why has it not been mass produced and made available sooner?
Given that CDC knows that Chloroquine/Hydroxychloroquine is an effective treatment for COVID-19 and a prophylactic against infection. There are grounds for everyone that has suffered and the families of those who have died for a Class Action Law suit against the CDC
— Ian Wilson (@Le_Nautonnier) March 19, 2020

Here, you might have imagined, is the dream solution: a stop gap treatment for coronavirus which could save many lives and obviate the need for this global lockdown which is destroying our economies. Why isn’t the solution being shouted from the rooftops? One possibility, as I suggested yesterday, is that there is no money in it for Big Pharma. Chloroquine is a generic drug. That’s why Big Pharma’s lobbyists have worked hard to persuade governments that there can be no acceptable solution till a patented vaccine is brought on to the market. Even if this happens it won’t be till long after the pandemic is over – probably not till at least next year. I don’t think our businesses, our livelihoods, our sanity can wait that long. Do you?



Delingpole: Chloroquine/Malaria/Coronavirus – ‘Stunning’ Correlation Claimed
Breitbart News

URL: https://www.breitbart.com/politics/2020 ... n-claimed/
Category: healthNews
Published: March 20, 2020

Description: The incidence of COVID-19 is dramatically lower in malarial countries than in non-malarial countries, according to one researcher. This may well vindicate President Donald Trump’s decision to fast-track the use of the anti-malarial drug chloroquine phosphate for the treatment of coronavirus. The correlation was spotted by Dr Roy Spencer, meteorologist and a principal research scientist at the University of Alabama in Huntsville. Here is what he posted on his Facebook page: There are various possible explanations for this ‘stunning’ correlation. One is that malarial countries are not keeping effective records and that the incidence of COVID-19 is much higher than they admit; another is that they are located in the tropics – and coronavirus does not survive for so long in hot countries. But the most encouraging possibility is that these are countries whose populations have been heavily exposed to the cheap, generic, old-fashioned anti-malarial drug chloroquine phosphate – and that this may have given them a degree of immunity. As I reported earlier, several studies – including a small scale one conducted in France this month – suggest that chloroquine has proved effective in treating COVID-19. It has been previously used successfully in the treatment of SARS another coronavirus with similar characteristics to COVID-19. Anthony Watts at Watts Up With That? reports: Additional support for antimalarial drugs for COVID-19 treatment comes from this investigation linked below. The map says it all: COVID-19 is where Malaria is not. This is surely good news and offers great hope that the pandemic can be brought under control sooner rather than later.



Florida Man with Coronavirus Credits Drug Touted by Trump for Saving His Life
Breitbart News

URL: https://www.breitbart.com/local/2020/03 ... -his-life/
Category: healthNews
Published: March 23, 2020

Description: A Florida man with coronavirus claims an anti-malaria drug, touted by President Donald Trump as a possible treatment for the virus, saved his life. Rio Giardinieri, 52, told Fox 11 Los Angeles that he suffered from a cough, headache, back pain, and fatigue after he caught the coronavirus, which he believes he caught at a conference in New York. Doctors in South Florida diagnosed him with the coronavirus and pneumonia and put him on oxygen in the intensive care unit (ICU). More than a week later, doctors said there was nothing more they could do for him, so on Friday evening, Giardinieri said his goodbyes to his wife and three kids. “I was at the point where I was barely able to speak and breathing was very challenging,” Giardinieri said. “I really thought my end was there.” Then, a friend forwarded him an article about hydroxychloroquine, a prescription drug used to treat illnesses such as malaria and lupus. Other studies conducted overseas have found it to be a promising treatment for coronavirus, although it has not yet been approved by health officials. Trump said last week he was asking the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to fast-track its testing of hydroxychloroquine and a similar drug, chloroquine, as a treatment for the coronavirus. Giardinieri said he got in touch with an infectious disease doctor about hydroxychloroquine. “He gave me all the reasons why I would probably not want to try it because there are no trials, there’s no testing, it was not something that was approved,” said Giardinieri. “And I said, ‘Look, I don’t know if I’m going to make it until the morning,’ because at that point I really thought I was coming to the end because I couldn’t breathe anymore,” Giardinieri continued. The doctor agreed and within 30 minutes, a nurse gave him an IV infusion of the medicine. After receiving the medicine via IV for about an hour, Giardinieri said he felt his heart beating rapidly and had another episode where he could barely breathe. He added that he was given some Benadryl and other drugs so when he awoke at 4:45 a.m. “It was like nothing ever happened.” Since the IV infusion, Giardinieri said he has had no fever or pain and can breathe. He added that doctors believe the episodes he experienced were related to his body fighting the virus as opposed to a reaction to the medicine. Giardinieri had three doses of the medicine since his first dose and hopes to be discharged in five days. “To me, there was no doubt in mind that I wouldn’t make it until morning,” said Giardinieri. “So to me, the drug saved my life.”



Michigan Man Credits President Trump for Surviving Coronavirus, Says Gov. Whitmer ‘Sentencing People to Death’
Breitbart News

URL: https://www.breitbart.com/politics/2020 ... -to-death/
Category: Politics
Published: March 28, 2020

Description: A 38-year-old Michigan man with no underlying conditions contracted coronavirus last week and was successfully treated with the drug combination being touted by President Trump. Jim Santilli told talk radio host Steve Gruber he is “living proof” the combination of the malaria drug hydroxychloroquine and the antibiotic azithromycin works. Santilli said he became seriously ill March 18 “with severe cardiac and respiratory issues” and was admitted to Henry Ford Macomb Hospital in metro Detroit. According to Gruber, “Santilli said the biggest problem was waiting for test results that took four days to come back. In the meantime his condition worsened by the hour, and he thought he was going to die.” “Santilli says he was slowly drowning and was convinced he ‘would not live until midnight.’ That’s when doctors made a decision he says changed everything,” Gruber said. The survivor said the drug combination began to work “within a few hours.” Santilli credited Trump for his survival. “Donald Trump recommending that medication combination saved my life and a lot of other people’s lives,” he told Gruber. Santilli criticized Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) for her recent threat against doctors and pharmacists, and believed it is a “terrible decision,” adding, “She is sentencing people to death.” Whitmer sent a letter to medical professionals on March 24:
Prescribing hydroxychloroquine or chloroquine without further proof of efficacy for treating COVID-19 or with the intent to stockpile the drug may create a shortage for patients with lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, or other ailments for which chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine are proven treatments. Reports of this conduct will be evaluated and may be further investigated for administrative action. Prescribing any kind of prescription must also be associated with medical documentation showing proof of the medical necessity and medical condition for which the patient is being treated. Again, these are drugs that have not been proven scientifically or medically to treat COVID-19.

According to Gruber:
Santilli added that he isn’t the only one that is alive because of hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin either. He said the medical staff told him other patients were also responding well to the treatment and their lives are also being saved.

Gruber told Breitbart News on Friday he believes Whitmer is angling to be Joe Biden’s vice presidential nominee, and that his driving her opposition to Trump’s actions.



Nolte: Michigan Democrat Says She Almost Didn’t Receive Hydroxychloroquine Due to State Block
Breitbart News

URL: https://www.breitbart.com/the-media/202 ... ate-block/
Category: healthNews
Published: April 7, 2020

Description: “If President Trump had not talked about [hydroxychloroquine], it would not be something that’s accessible” in Michigan “because of an order that was put down in my state,” said State Rep. Karen Whitsett (D-Detroit). You have to watch the whole clip.

karen-whitsett.jpg

For just a moment, forget about the politics. Forget about who has a “D” and who has an “R” after their respective names. Listen to this woman’s story, of how terrified she was after testing positive for the coronavirus, a diagnosis that could be a sentence to a long, painful, horrible, awful illness; and at worst a death sentence. And now look at her… At home, smiling, laughing, and grateful for access to the hydroxychloroquine her own governor blocked just to own Trump; a drug she would not have known anything about had Trump not had the courage to talk about it, even as our increasingly unbalanced and sociopathic media rage against him over his heroic act of raising awareness. To be clear, we don’t know for a fact the hydroxychloroquine made the difference or any difference for Rep. Whitsett. There’s a possibility Whitsett was already predisposed to shrug the coronavirus off quickly. But that doesn’t matter. What matters is that thanks only to Trump’s moral courage, a terrified woman who wanted every chance at life, every chance at beating this thing, was able to gain access to it. And what really matters is if in fact it did make the difference. And if that’s the case, if this drug did save her and her husband from the horrors of a long illness or worse, the only person who deserves credit for saving her is President Trump, something Whitsett all but expressed in an earlier interview. “It has a lot to do with the president … bringing it up,” Whitsett said. “He is the only person who has the power to make it a priority.” The demonic media and their fellow partisan Democrats — like Michigan Democrat Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, who was eventually forced to drop her partisan and potentially deadly hydroxychloroquine ban after the FDA approved it for emergency use — are on a demonic crusade to scare people away from trying this drug when (as long as you consult with your doctor to avoid potential side effects) there is no downside. This drug has been on the market for decades, countless millions take it without any problem, and there is a growing amount of anecdotal and medical evidence that it is indeed effective against the Chinese virus. So the worst-case scenario, as long as you take it with a doctor’s approval, is that it does nothing to you — doesn’t help you, doesn’t harm you. So… What have you got to lose in giving it a try? Nothing! And even if there are side effects, in order to save our own lives we frequently agree to treatments with horrible side effects, things like chemotherapy and radiation. But just to OWN Trump, our monstrous media are desperate to scare people away from it, are desperately hoping he’s wrong about its effectiveness, and desperately want to increase the body count to hurt Trump’s reelection chances. Anyone with the courage, especially if you’re a Democrat, to speak out against a media narrative, especially in a way that supports Trump, is a hero in my book. Rep. Whitsett is risking personal destruction in speaking out. She’s risking having her status as a woman, a Democrat, and a black person questioned and demeaned. So thank God for Rep. Karen Whitsett. Thank God for her moral courage. Thank God for her willingness to speak out, for her shining light on humanity that puts life above owning the Orange Bad Man. And I don’t say this lightly, but God damn those who, only for partisan reasons, would deny or discourage Rep. Whitsett, or anyone, every opportunity to beat this thing, every opportunity to save their own life.



Nolte: The One Fact that Shuts Down Media’s Fake Outrage About Trump & Hydroxychloroquine
Breitbart News

URL: https://www.breitbart.com/the-media/202 ... loroquine/
Category: Politics
Published: May 19, 2020

Description: President Trump conferred with his physician, which means he handled his decision to take hydroxychloroquine in the exact right way. That’s it. End of story. There is only one correct and precise way to deal with a prescription drug like hydroxychloroquine, and that is to consult with your physician. Your doctor understands your personal health. Your doctor understands the potential side effects of hydroxychloroquine. Your doctor will look at both, compare it to the potential benefits, and make an informed decision based on science and study. That’s what Trump did. That’s why Trump is taking hydroxychloroquine. He did the exact right thing, which means… Trump should be held up as a role model for anyone considering taking hydroxychloroquine — or any prescription of any kind, for that matter. Trump’s behavior in this regard is responsible, adult, intelligent, and, most of all, medically sound. But if you look at our fake news media today, they continue to behave like the evil sociopaths they are by trying to insert themselves between you and your doctor, and this sociopathic behavior is all grounded in partisan politics. You see, 1) no matter what Trump does, even the simple, everyday act of consulting with a doctor before taking a prescription drug, that must be framed as wrong, and 2) the sociopathic media would rather see people die of the coronavirus than saved by something Trump supports. Even if you despise Trump, just for a moment try to set aside your emotions… Seriously, just for a moment, think about what the media are doing right now. The president of the United States is taking a prescription drug at the recommendation of his physician, and on top of screaming fatty, fat, fat, fat at the president for the last 18 hours, the media are aggressively propagandizing the act of consulting with your doctor about a prescription as dangerous and wrong. What’s more, according to the media, Trump should not be consulting with a trained medical professional fully aware of his and his family’s medical history. Oh, no, no, no… Instead, Trump should be consulting with Dr. Neal Cavuto of the prestigious Fox News Medical Clinic, who went on TV to scream about how a drug millions have been safely taking for decades “will kill you. I cannot stress that enough. This will kill you.” What an idiot. Can’t imagine why he’s the only Fox News anchor losing to CNN. The media also believe Trump should have consulted with Dr. Sanjay Gupta of the renowned CNNLOL Research University, who has never examined Trump, who has no knowledge of Trump’s medical history, but still declared Trump’s decision to consult with his physician “terribly irresponsible, it sets a bad example… and dangerous.” The media also believe that rather than consult with his doctor, Trump should have consulted with Dr. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), the same “doctor” who told everyone to gather in Chinatown during the coronavirus outbreak. And what was Dr. Shiny Botox-Face’s medical advice to the president? That he should ignore his own doctor because fatty-fat-fat-fat. To which I would like to quickly interject by saying that… Now that our media elites have okayed fat-shaming, I cannot tell you how much I’m looking forward to Stacey Abrams being nominated as Joe Biden’s vice president. Best of all, rather than consult with our licensed physicians, we should instead consult with Dr. Joy Behar of St. Shrill of the Joyless Harpies. Think about what the media have done over the past few days, all in the name of partisan posturing… You have Jonathan Martin of the far-left New York Times and Jake Tapper of CNNLOL looking to normalize the unwanted and inappropriate touching of young girls because Joe Biden touches young girls inappropriately, and now you have the media in a full-blown crusade to convince us to stop consulting with our doctors and to instead listen instead to pundits and politicians, because Orange Man Bad. I mean, honestly, all Trump did was get a prescription for a drug taken safely by millions for decades. That’s all the guy did.



Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert Wilkie Blasts ‘Phony’ Media on Hydroxychloroquine Study
Breitbart News

URL: https://www.breitbart.com/politics/2020 ... ine-study/
Category: Politics
Published: May 19, 2020

Description: Veterans Affairs Secretary Robert Wilkie on Tuesday at the Whtie House shot down a media narrative surrounding hydroxychloroquine and a study opposing it. “I want to knock down the phony story that this is somehow the VA going back on what the president told us to do, which was to use every means possible to protect and preserve the lives of our veterans,” Wilkie said. ” Wilkie said that the researchers of the hydroxychloroquine study repeatedly cited by the press took Veterans Affairs numbers and they did not clinically review or peer review them, including the various co-morbidities of the elderly patients. “That was not a VA study,” Wilkie said as the president took questions from reporters during a cabinet meeting at the White House. He noted that the military had been using the drug for years, typically using 42,000 doses of the drug in a day. “Those of us who have had a military life, some of us around this table, we’ve been taking this drug for years,” he said. As the president mentioned, the Department of Defense and the VA have been using it for 65 years. Wilkie said that the Veterans Affairs department used the drug as part of Trump’s order to use “every means necessary to preserve life” for veterans and had consulted with veterans and their families on the use of the drug. Trump said the drug got “tremendous reviews” from many doctors and that it was an important “first line of defense” in fighting the virus. “I thought as a front line defense, possibly it would be good. I’ve had no impact from it. I feel the same. I haven’t changed I don’t think too much,” Trump said.
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Opinion: Michigan’s doctors fight coronavirus, and governor's office

Postby smix » Mon Apr 20, 2020 1:32 pm

Opinion: Michigan’s doctors fight coronavirus, and governor's office
Detroit News

URL: https://www.detroitnews.com/story/opini ... 922272001/
Category: Politics
Published: March 26, 2020

Description: The coronavirus is unquestionably a significant threat to the health and safety of people throughout the world. The infection’s worldwide death toll is more than 23,000 and counting, 1,163 in the United States and 60 here in Michigan. There is a silver lining however, in the numbers of people who are recovering from COVID-19 — more than 122,000 at this writing. Even greater hope lies in a promising new treatment using a combination of old drugs: Plaquenil (hydroxychloroquine) and a Z-Pak (azithromycin). These well-known drugs have very favorable safety profiles. Several small studies have shown significant reduction in viral loads and symptom improvement when combining these medications in COVID-19 patients. Though these studies are small and do not prove efficacy, the results were so promising that the authors of the most famous study concluded: “We therefore recommend that COVID-19 patients be treated with hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin to cure their infection and to limit the transmission of the virus to other people in order to curb the spread of COVID-19 in the world.” Based on these and other results physicians and governments around the world are now using these medications to claimed great effect. Even in the state of Michigan, prominent hospitals such as the Henry Ford Hospital and the University of Michigan have added hydroxychloroquine to their treatment protocols for hospitalized patients with COVID-19. By doing so, physicians are using these medications “off-label,” that is, without the costly and time-consuming process of Food and Drug Administration approval. The federal agency’s approval process performs the good task of helping to ensure medications safely do what they claim to do. However, lack of FDA approval does not mean lack of efficacy. It means lack of governmental confirmation of efficacy. “Off-label” use of medications is legal and common. It may even account for as many as 1 in 5 prescriptions in the United States. This practice is even accepted by the FDA. Furthermore, given the severity of the COVID-19 pandemic and the promise of these medications the FDA has avoided condemning the “off-label” use of hydroxychloroquine for COVID-19. But if you live in Michigan, and you or a loved one is infected with this potentially lethal disease, you’re out of luck. Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs literally threatened all doctors and pharmacists in the state who prescribe or dispense hydroxychloroquine to treat COVID-19. The agency’s March 24 letter warns physicians and pharmacists of professional consequences for the prescribing of hydroxychloroquine (and chloroquine). Beyond the rational recommendation against hoarding as production of this medication needs to be ramped up, the letter deviates into open threats of “administrative action” against the licenses of doctors that prescribe hydroxychloroquine. The letter also instructs pharmacists to ignore physician orders for this medication. Due to the debate over a pharmacist’s right to refuse to fill medications that go against their religious beliefs, this could place pharmacists in the unprecedented position of being told that they must fill prescriptions that violate their “conscience (religious belief)” but must not fill prescriptions to treat COVID-19. Even worse, the letter indicates health care providers are “required to report” their fellow physicians who are prescribing these medications. This draconian measure carries ominous Gestapo-like overtones of neighbor reporting neighbor to “authorities.” During a time of crisis, in which physicians continue to see patients despite not having enough protective gear, this threatening, authoritarian stance from our governor is counterproductive at best. What makes this directive more of a head-scratcher is that the same day the state issued its threatening nastygram to Michigan’s health care providers, Whitmer’s counterpart in New York started clinical trials of the very same drugs. With his state now the nation’s pandemic epicenter, and with the blessing and help of the president and FDA, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo brought in 70,000 doses of hydroxychloroquine, 10,000 doses of Zithromax and 750,000 doses of chloroquine. The implications of Whitmer and her administration’s knee-jerk scare tactics should terrify all Michigan residents. Not only is our state’s top leader threatening the selfless health care workers who are on the frontline trying to save lives, but she’s denying possible life-saving medications to actual COVID-19 victims.
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Macomb man with COVID-19 says Hydroxychloroquine, Azithromycin saved him

Postby smix » Mon Apr 20, 2020 1:41 pm

Macomb man with COVID-19 says Hydroxychloroquine, Azithromycin saved him
Fox 2 Detroit

URL: https://www.fox2detroit.com/news/macomb ... -saved-him
Category: healthNews
Published: March 30, 2020

Description: MACOMB COUNTY, Mich. (FOX 2) - A Macomb County patient was recently given a drug typically used for malaria that is showing positive results for beating COVID-19. Jim Santilli said it helped him and he believes it could help others, too. "I was struggling to breathe. I felt like I was slowly drowning and I was sitting there thinking I'm not going to make it until midnight," he said.

youtube-dictator.jpg
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qughPzIEAQU

Santilli says the experimental drugs Hydroxychloroquine and Azithromycin brought him back from the brink. The 38-year old was prescribed the drugs a little more than a week ago at Henry Ford Macomb where he was hospitalized for COVID-19. He says a doctor told him they'd exhausted treatment options. An infectious disease physician recommended he try both. "He stated at that point for COVID-19 patients they saw a lot of positive results in China and South Korea it would be advantageous to try it," Santilli said. "Right away I saw improvements in a few hours: the gasping for air stopped; a lot of my symptoms went away, and really it was a turning point almost a 180 degree turn as to what I was experiencing." The FDA recently approved shipping Chloroquine and Hydroxychloroquine products to public health authorities across the country to treat severe cases of COVID-19. It said it is reasonable to believe they may be effective in treating COVID-19 and that the known and potential benefits outweigh the risks. "It does appear as though Hydroxychloroquine may be beneficial," said Dr. Rudolph Valentini. Valentini is the chief medical officer from the Detroit Medical Center and says physicians there are already using Hydroxychlorquine to treat some COVID-19 patients. "It's not a classic antiviral mediation," he said. "One has to be a little suspect before we attribute too much benefit from a medication that's not designed to treat viral infections. I wouldn't get too encouraged by it, at the same time I think we all need hope and we need to have options and this seems to be a safe option." As for Jim Santilli, he is simply thankful to be alive and says he's living proof of what the drugs are capable of. "I truly think the American people can have hope that we have something here that works and can help us get through this horrible situation," he said. FOX 2 reached out to the State Department of licensing and regulatory affairs about Hydroxychloroquine: "Prescribers and dispensers have a responsibility to apply the best standards of care and use their clinical judgment when prescribing and dispensing these and any other drugs to treat patients with legitimate medical conditions. Santilli is still in isolation. The Health Department told him it's best he stays in quarantine until three days after all of his symptoms subside. Right now he still has a cough. Valentini said that in rare cases there can be side effects where people can develop heart and sight problems. And if there's widespread use of Hydroxychloroquine-talking millions of millions of people, we'll likely see those extremely rare side effects come out.



Henry Ford doctor leading hydroxychloroquine research sees promise
Fox 2 Detroit

URL: https://www.fox2detroit.com/news/henry- ... es-promise
Category: healthNews
Published: May 20, 2020

Description: (FOX 2) - The FDA has warned against taking hydroxychloroquine, but President Trump says he's taking it and isn't concerned. Dr. William O'Neill, a world-renowned Henry Ford doctor, is leading one of the largest U.S. studies into the drug. He gives us a little more information. "The drug has been available for decades. Initially, it was used as a treatment for malaria, so if you go into a malaria-prone area you get the drug as a preventative so that you don't catch malaria, and it's very effective for treatment of malaria also. In addition, it's been found to have very profound anti-inflammatory properties and so it's used in people that have rheumatoid arthritis and lupus, and literally tens of thousands of patients a year are taking the medication in the United States right now. It's an extremely safe medicine," he says. In fact, Dr. O'Neill calls a recent report based on veterans and the dangers of hydroxychloroquine "junk science." "The report has never been peer-reviewed, meaning that other doctors haven't been able to review the information. And it's an incredibly inaccurate, biased report," he says. So what can this anti-malaria drug do to prevent COVID-19? Now Dr. O'Neill is leading a large study to test the preventive power of the drug in hundreds of patients who are at high risk of exposure: healthcare workers. "Here at Henry Ford, we were having 50 or 60 people a day becoming infected so it really is a huge potential risk." The drug has shown promise in patients around the world. "Patients in China and patients in Italy are taking hydroxychloroquine on a regular basis for the treatment of lupus or rheumatoid arthritis have very, very low risk of developing COVID infections. And so we're testing that theory, that if you're taking the drug and get exposed to COVID you won't become ill, and we're doing it in a very scientific way." That means for eight weeks some patients get the drug some don't and no one, not even the doctors, know the difference. While he's not in the study, President Trump is taking the same dosage of the drug for the same purpose, to prevent COVID-19. Dr. O'Neill says it might make medical sense. He also says he hopes to have some preliminary results in a couple months, with final results available in the end of summer.
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The Left’s Ugly Reaction to Hydroxychloroquine

Postby smix » Thu Apr 23, 2020 4:10 pm

The Left’s Ugly Reaction to Hydroxychloroquine
National Review

URL: https://www.nationalreview.com/2020/04/ ... loroquine/
Category: Politics
Published: April 7, 2020

Description: The idea that he is promoting the drug to boost the price of a mutual fund in which he owns shares is perhaps the most ludicrous conspiracy theory yet.
A widely shared, four-person-bylined, “wow”-provoking New York Times story today informs us that Donald Trump is personally benefiting from his “aggressive advocacy” of the anti-malaria drug hydroxychloroquine because he owns stock in one of the companies that manufacture the drug. The story might be one of the most ridiculous articles published by mainstream media in the Trump era — though, admittedly, the field is highly competitive. But while knee-jerk anti-Trumpism is expected, the angry obsession over the president’s championing of hydroxychloroquine is uniquely ugly. For one thing, and I realize this might be difficult for some people to comprehend, it’s plausible, even likely, that Trump advocates for chloroquine because he is legitimately optimistic that a therapeutic answer might help Americans. Even if you feel he’s being reckless when speaking about the drug, you can accept that his intentions are good. It’s also possible that Trump is hopeful about hydroxychloroquine because he thinks it will help his reelection. Desiring an outcome that benefits the vast majority of Americans, but also benefits you, is a perfectly sound moral position. Hoping for negative outcomes to strengthen your partisan position, on the other hand, is pretty nefarious. In any event, the crack team at the New York Times thinks it’s unfurled the mystery. “As of last year,” reports the paper, “Mr. Trump reported that his three family trusts each had investments in a Dodge & Cox mutual fund, whose largest holding was in Sanofi.” As far as we know, Trump probably owns less than $100 of Sanofi stock in one of his mutual funds. If things go well, say he triples his position, Trump will be taking in upwards of $300. Art of the Deal, indeed. Though it’s unlikely. Sanofi is a French drugmaker that produces the hydroxychloroquine-label Plaquenil. The drug, however, isn’t patented, it isn’t particularly difficult to manufacture, and there are a bunch of giant pharma companies around the world already ramping up production of generic versions. Sanofi is less likely to benefit than Novartis or Bayer (check everyone’s mutual funds, pronto!). So cunning is Trump’s scheme to spike his $1,000 mutual-fund position that he called India’s prime minister, Narendra Modi, this week and convinced him to lift a ban and start exporting even more generic hydroxychloroquine to the United States. The Left simply can’t accept that a Republican acts in good faith. If they’re not hiding some devious self-serving motivation, they’re under the thumb of a foreign power or a shadowy industry. If it’s not Big Oil leading George Bush into Iraq, it’s Mitt Romney trying to hand the country to his buddies at Bain Capital. Working from this predetermined position, reporters are sure that Trump, who they think became president to fill the rooms in his D.C. hotel, isn’t merely peddling hope for hope’s sake alone. All of this is just fodder for the screeching partisan minions, nothing else. If there were a healthy, functioning fourth column, a piece like this would never run. Can you imagine any major publication running a piece linking Barack Obama’s praise of GM’s heavily subsidized electric-car manufacturing to a thousand bucks in a mutual fund? Nor should it escape your attention that the New York Times will assign four reporters to write an amateurish hit job, but not a single one to mention serious rape allegations against the leading Democratic Party presidential candidate by a former staffer. When Trump first mentioned hydroxychloroquine, reporters scoured the world to find overdose cases so they could claim the president had blood on his hands. When that effort came up short, they clutched pearls after some nitwit couple thought it wise to ingest fish-tank cleaning liquid. Now this. Hydroxychloroquine is a prescription drug, not a pill that Americans can buy in bulk at the local Walmart and hoard in their closest and pop prophylactically each day. Media keeps asserting that Trump is “ignoring the experts.” Well, the president didn’t induce South Korean doctors to use hydroxychloroquine. He didn’t induce Indian doctors to use it. I assume American doctors who are now “off-labeling” the drug to patients have some medical reasons behind their thinking. If doctors think it’s promising to look at it as a way to mitigate symptoms, why shouldn’t they go for it? It might help. It might not. Maybe another drug or treatment no one is talking about will emerge. There is nothing wrong with offering hope. Americans aren’t children, even if our media treats them as such.



Widely-Touted Study Warning of Hydroxychloroquine Complications Under Scrutiny for Faking Data
National Review

URL: https://www.nationalreview.com/news/wid ... king-data/
Category: Politics
Published: June 3, 2020

Description: A study that cited worldwide hospital data to warn of higher risks of death and heart problems with taking the antimalarial drug hydroxychloroquine to treat coronavirus is now under scrutiny for faking data. The hydroxychloroquine study, published in two of the world’s leading medical journals — the Lancet and the New England Journal of Medicine — used data from thousands of hospitals and tens of thousands of patients to conclude that chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine treatments had no positive effects on Covid-19 patients and led to greater risks of health problems. The findings caused the World Health Organization and other researchers to halt studies looking into the effectiveness of the antimalarial drugs as possible coronavirus treatments, and raised further criticism against the Trump administration, which has touted the drug as an effective treatment. Last month, President Trump said that he had completed a two-week course of hydroxychloroquine as a preventative measure against coronavirus. But the studies were based on data from Surgisphere, a little-known U.S. company, whose employees have little or no data or scientific background, according to The Guardian. The company’s chief executive, Sapan Desai, who is listed as a coauthor of the Lancet study, said that his company was “not responsible for the source data,” explaining that the records of the nearly 100,000 patients used in the study were compiled by the respective hospitals, not his team. But the claim contradicted that of QuartzClinical — the content management system Desai said Surgisphere employed — which stated on its website that it “successfully integrates your electronic health record, financial system, supply chain, and quality programs into one platform.” Peter Ellis, the chief data scientist of Nous Group, an international management consultancy that does data integration projects for government departments, told The Guardian that Surgisphere’s database was “almost certainly a scam.” “It is not something that any hospital could realistically do,” he explained. “De-identifying is not just a matter of knocking off the patients’ names, it is a big and difficult process. I doubt hospitals even have capability to do it appropriately. It is the sort of thing national statistics agencies have whole teams working on, for years.” Following widespread scrutiny, both the Lancet and the New England Journal of Medicine released statements saying they have acknowledged the serious concerns and are looking into the source of the data.



About That Scary Hydroxychloroquine Study
National Review

URL: https://www.nationalreview.com/corner/a ... ine-study/
Category: Politics
Published: June 3, 2020

Description: Remember that scary hydroxychloroquine study in The Lancet and New England Journal of Medicine that everyone in the media was writing about a few weeks ago? It turns out that the underlying data was likely fake:
A Guardian investigation can reveal the US-based company Surgisphere, whose handful of employees appear to include a science fiction writer and an adult-content model, has provided data for multiple studies on Covid-19 co-authored by its chief executive, but has so far failed to adequately explain its data or methodology.

A peer-reviewed Lancet study claimed that Surgisphere culled data from nearly 15,000 COVID-19 patients from 1,200 hospitals around the world. There is no evidence that it collected any data from anyone. Partisans been rooting against hydroxychloroquine for months now. There’s really no other way to describe the manic reaction to a drug that has been widely, though anecdotally, said to have therapeutic value against the coronavirus. Politicians have blocked attempts to study the drug. The number of shoddy pieces of journalism surrounding hydroxychloroquine is just remarkable. Apparently, it is also dangerous. A couple of weeks ago, Joe Biden compared taking hydroxychloroquine to drinking bleach, even though millions of Americans use the drug every day to survive. At the time, I linked to an NPR interview in which doctors at Columbia University and other research institutions complained that they couldn’t find people to conduct simple clinical trials on hydroxychloroquine’s effectiveness, even though the drug was, as one doctor put it, “very very safe.” Two verys. Now we know that thousands of hospitals around the world relied on Surgisphere data to make determinations about treatment and studies. The WHO, the organization I am assured we must continue funding, halted clinical trials — followed by a number of countries — because of the alleged dangers borne from the imaginary data put together by an adult model. WHO has now reversed course and resumed studies. If we learn that hydroxychloroquine is helpful mitigating the harm coronavirus — and that’s still a big if; a new study today shows that it is not effective as a prophylactic — we can probably thank knee-jerk anti-Trumpism for delays. Scientists have trouble conducting studies, medical journals will take shortcuts in a rush to prove the president wrong (what else could explain it?), and the media will publish any scary story that reaffirms their preexisting prejudices. If you’re interested in further corroding public trust in experts, this is a perfect way to do it. It’s a scandal.
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WSJ Op-Ed: Two Physicians Weigh in on Hydroxychloroquine, ‘We Don’t Have the Luxury of Time’

Postby smix » Thu Apr 23, 2020 4:36 pm

WSJ Op-Ed: Two Physicians Weigh in on Hydroxychloroquine, ‘We Don’t Have the Luxury of Time’
Red State

URL: https://www.redstate.com/elizabeth-vaug ... 23/804620/
Category: Politics
Published: March 23, 2020

Description: (Dr. Jeff Colyer is a practicing physician and is currently the chairman of the National Advisory Commission on Rural Health. Dr. Daniel Hinthorn is the director of the Division of Infectious Disease at the University of Kansas Medical Center.)
Last week, several small studies reported promising results in the fight against the Chinese virus through the use of hydroxychloroquine, a generic, anti-viral drug used to treat lupus, arthritis and malaria.” Doctors in France, South Korea and the U.S. have prescribed it to Covid-19 patients and have reported success. President Trump spoke about this drug used in combination with azithromycin. In a Monday op-ed, Dr. Colyer and Dr. Hinthorn, write that they are treating their Covid-19 patients with hydroxychoroquine and report that “the therapy appears to be making a difference. It isn’t a silver bullet, but if deployed quickly and strategically the drug could potentially help bend the pandemic’s “hockey stick” curve.” Drs. Colyer and Hinthorn write:
The medication, whose brand name is Plaquenil, is relatively safe, with the main side effect being stomach irritation, though it can cause echocardiogram and vision changes. In 2005, a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study showed that chloroquine, an analogue, could block a virus from penetrating a cell if administered before exposure. If tissue had already been infected, the drug inhibited the virus. On March 9 a team of researchers in China published results showing hydroxychloroquine was effective against the 2019 coronavirus in a test tube. The authors suggested a five-day, 12-pill treatment for Covid-19: two 200-milligram tablets twice a day on the first day followed by one tablet twice a day for four more days. A more recent French study used the drug in combination with azithromycin. Most Americans know azithromycin as the brand name Zithromax Z-Pak, prescribed for upper respiratory infections. The Z-Pak alone doesn’t appear to help fight Covid-19, and the findings of combination treatment are preliminary. But researchers in France treated a small number of patients with both hydroxychloroquine and a Z-Pak, and 100% of them were cured by day six of treatment. Compare that with 57.1% of patients treated with hydroxychloroquine alone, and 12.5% of patients who received neither. What’s more, most patients cleared the virus in three to six days rather than the 20 days observed in China. That reduces the time a patient can spread the virus to others. One lesson that should inform the U.S. approach: Use this treatment cocktail early, and don’t wait until a patient is on a ventilator in the intensive-care unit.

The most important point the doctors make is that we don’t have the luxury of time. There are currently larger studies being conducted, but the results won’t be available for weeks. They explain, “We have a drug with an excellent safety profile but limited clinical outcomes—and no better alternatives until long after this disaster peaks. We can use this treatment to help save lives and prevent others from becoming infected. Or we can wait several weeks and risk discovering we didn’t do everything we could to end this pandemic as quickly as possible.” It will also help contain the spread of the disease. They have begun using hydroxychloroquine in combination with azithromycin, or as many of us know it, with Z-pak. They have found that, with the combination, their patients “appear to be showing fewer symptoms.” In addition to using hydroxychloroquine to treat patients, they’ve begun to use it as “prophylaxis to protect health-care workers from infection. Emergency rooms run the risk of one patient exposing a dozen nurses and doctors. Instead of exposed health workers getting placed on 14-day quarantine, they could receive hydroxychloroquine for five days, then test for the virus. That would allow health-care workers to return to work sooner if they test negative.”



Boom: FDA Approves Hydroxychloroquine and Chloroquine for Emergency Use for COVID-19, With Restrictions
Red State

URL: https://www.redstate.com/nick-arama/202 ... f-a-catch/
Category: Politics
Published: March 30, 2020

Description: Media went crazy on President Donald Trump for talking about the possible benefits that experts were looking at in trials for hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine. They chastised him saying he was being “too hopeful” or offering false hope. Sounds like the Food and Drug Administration has come to the conclusion that it isn’t such a false hope after all. According to Kron 4 News, the FDA has now issued an emergency use authorization for the two anti-malarial drugs to help treat people with the Wuhan coronavirus. However, they limited their authorization to those drugs that were supplied from the Strategic National Stockpile. Bayer and a division of Novartis — had donated the drugs to the stockpile. Here was their announcement:
On March 28, 2020, FDA issued an EUA to allow hydroxychloroquine sulfate and chloroquine phosphate products donated to the Strategic National Stockpile (SNS) to be distributed and used for certain hospitalized patients with COVID-19. These drugs will be distributed from the SNS to states for doctors to prescribe to adolescent and adult patients hospitalized with COVID-19, as appropriate, when a clinical trial is not available or feasible. The EUA requires that fact sheets that provide important information about using chloroquine phosphate and hydroxychloroquine sulfate in treating COVID-19 be made available to health care providers and patients, including the known risks and drug interactions. The SNS, managed by ASPR, will work with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to ship donated doses to states.

HHS said that “Anecdotal reports suggest that these drugs may offer some benefit in the treatment of hospitalized COVID-19 patients. The safety profile of these drugs has only been studied for FDA approved indications, not COVID-19.” The FDA said the benefits outweighed the risks, according to Kron4 News, and they encouraged trials. The drugs had already been approved for other uses such as malaria and some doctors have been using it as an “off-label use” for compassionate or emergency care in the case of the Wuhan coronavirus. New York is currently conducting trials using the drugs. France has also just officially sanctioned prescribing chloroquine to treat certain coronavirus patients, France 24 reported on Saturday, after a trial showed that 78 out of 80 patients recovered within five days, a considerably faster result than normal if they recovered at all. The drug has to be supplied from the stockpile and the patients have to be currently hospitalized. But that is an official step to recognizing that it has a beneficial use for the virus.
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Covid-19 is disappearing in Marseille, says leading virologist Dr Raoult

Postby smix » Sat Apr 25, 2020 12:51 am

Covid-19 is disappearing in Marseille, says leading virologist Dr Raoult
RFI

URL: http://www.rfi.fr/en/france/20200416-co ... ier-raoult
category: healthNews
Published: April 16, 2020

Description: High-profile virologist Didier Raoult, a leading proponent of the controversial drug chloroquine as a treatment for Covid-19, says the virus is disappearing in Marseille. But the city's regional health boss says it’s far too early for such conclusions. In a video on twitter on Tuesday night, the specialist in infectious diseases at Marseille university hospital declared that the virus is “gradually disappearing” in the city. “There is a very significant drop in the number of positive tests and an even bigger drop among those who are tested who have no symptoms,” he says. At the height of the epidemic, Raoult’s Méditerranée Infection Foundation counted 368 new cases per day. But now he says numbers are around 60 to 80.
Nouveau bulletin d'information scientifique : Coronavirus, recul de l'épidémie à Marseille.



— Didier Raoult (@raoult_didier) April 14, 2020

“It’s possible that the epidemic will disappear in the spring", he says, "A few weeks from now, it’s possible that there will be no more cases. We don’t know why, but we see it quite often, with the majority of viral respiratory illnesses.” However, the Director General of the Regional Health Agency for the Marseille area worries about such suggestions. "It is far too early to make predictions about the end of the epidemic", Philippe de Mester told the French newspaper France Bleu Provence. "We know nothing about its duration, unfortunately. It is true that we have recorded a slowdown in the spread of the epidemic, but not an actual decline. The epidemic will continue and it will take a few more weeks” He stressed the importance of continuing to follow the lockdown rules. Raoult regularly posts videos on Twitter, communicating directly with the public and not simply to the scientific community. His long hair and unconventional manner are part of the anti-establishment style he appears to cultivate and he has a growing number of followers. Supporters of his treatment see him as provincial hero challenging a Parisian scientific establishment and a working doctor standing up to researchers in ivory towers. He maintains that an anti-malaria drug, hydroxychloroquine, combined with the antibiotic azithromicyne, is an effective treatment for Covid-19 patients, if used before they need intensive care. He has published results from his use of this approach which show considerable success but with no neutral control group for comparison, there is no conclusive proof that patients recover because of his treatment. As a result, it has not been authorised for use except in certain conditions in hospitals. The drug is known to have negative side effects but it is already used against malaria and in the treatment of Lupus and rheumatoid arthritis. In an interview in Le Figaro on 3 April, Raoult was critical of today’s medical research processes. He said that trial methodology established during the fight against Aids was not suitable for all situations and that the “group of people” who worked together at that time adhered to such methods too rigidly. He said that research had become too divorced from medicine. Although Raoult himself is both a researcher and a clinical practitioner, he distinguished between the two, saying that as a doctor he wanted to use what seemed to work. In a health crisis, he said, lengthy trials could be shortened for a drug which is already in use. Numerous other trials on hydroxychloroquine are underway but so far none which tests his exact approach. It is unclear why his critics in the scientific community have not conducted such trials, to prove or disprove its effectiveness. Instead the impression is given of a scientific community which is unwilling for some reason to explore certain options versus a maverick burnishing a reputation. Several mostly right wing politicians have voiced support for Raoult and former health minister Philippe Douste-Blazy, a cardiologist, launched a petition to allow wider use of hydroxychloroquine. In an interview with RFI on Wednesday, President Macron said he was “convinced he is a great scientist”, describing him as one of our most eminent experts. Macron has now called for rigorous trials of Raoult’s treatment approach to be conducted very soon so that its efficacy can be proved or disproved.



French doctor who championed hydroxychloroquine to explain his actions to lawmakers
RFI

URL: http://www.rfi.fr/en/france/20200624-fr ... s-medicine
category: healthNews
Published: June 24, 2020

Description: French doctor and virologist Didier Raoult, whose use of malaria medication hydroxychloroquine at a treatment for Covid-19 has attracted worldwide attention and controversy, was to respond to questions of a parliamentary committee investigating France’s response to the epidemic. The inquiry of 32 lawmakers from different political parties was launched last month to “learn lessons” about France’s handling of the Covid-19 epidemic. After looking into face masks, the panel was to turn to hydroxychloroquine, a malaria medication championed as a treatment for Covid-19 by Raoult, who was to respond in late afternoon. “What we want to understand from Mr. Raoult is how he managed to follow a policy of mass testing in Marseille”, a city which had “mortality rates well beneath” those elsewhere in the country, said right-wing lawmaker Damien Abad on Tuesday. Raoult, who heads the infectious diseases department of the university hospital in Marseille, became widely known to the public inside and outside France by promoting hydroxychloroquine as a treatment for Covid-19 in late February, just before the epidemics were taking off in Europe. He has proved a divisive figure in media, cultivating a shaggy-haired, anti-establishment persona with a penchant for controversial remarks, claiming in early February the coronavirus was “not so mean” and subsequently assuring there would be no second wave of infection.
Hydroxychloroquine
Raoult’s claims about hydroxychloroquine are derived from two small studies combining the derivative of the chloroquine molecule, used to treat lupus and malaria, with antibiotic azithromycine. The doctor said in late February the drug was “probably the least expensive and simplest way to treat the coronavirus”. The claims have met with mixed reviews among scientists and health officials, with some heaping praise on Raoult and others objecting that the molecule’s efficiency has not been proven and that it could engender dangerous side effects. United States President Donald Trump and Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro have defended the medication and Trump once declared he was taking hydroxychloroquine as a preventative measure. French President Emmanuel Macron said he was “convinced [Raoult] is a great scientist” after meeting the doctor in early April and called on rigorous trials of the treatment. But France banned use of the drug as a treatment for Covid and the World Health Organization (WHO) suspended trials in May, following the publication of a study in medical journal The Lancet that suggested hydroxychloroquine posed risks of heart problems. But the WHO reversed its decision after experts poured doubt on the findings and the journal withdrew the study when its authors declined to provide its data sets.
Remarks
Raoult has continued defending the treatment in the days leading up to his appearance before the inquiry. “I treated more than 3,700 patients with this medication, with 0.5 percent mortality and no cardiac toxicity,” he told Le Parisien newspaper in an interview published Tuesday. “What more do you want?” Raoult also said he believed a large part of French citizens are already immune to the disease caused by the new coronavirus. “My hypothesis is that part of the population was naturally immunised against Covid before the start of the epidemic,” he told newspaper Le Parisien, but said he had no idea why there seemed to be an estimated “40 to 70 percent” rate of natural immunity. “What is sure, is that by speaking about natural immunity, I’ll be set on fire by the laboratories working on vaccines,” he told the paper. In regards to efforts to develop a vaccine, Raoult expressed doubt: “It is statistically improbably that a vaccine will be available” at this point, he said. On authors of two recent studies published in British review Recovery and French revue Discovery claiming the treatment is ineffective: “They are ignoramuses” who either gave patients too much or too little of the drug. “Had they asked my opinion, they might have been more effective,” Raoult said. Asked about critics saying he published too often to be credible: “Do you ask Mozart did what he did? I’ll add that in addition to 150 publications per year, I published 10 books at the same time. We are not all equal. In this country, we love to decapitate people.”
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Coronavirus: Didier Raoult the African and chloroquine, from Dakar to Brazzaville

Postby smix » Sat Apr 25, 2020 1:40 am

Coronavirus: Didier Raoult the African and chloroquine, from Dakar to Brazzaville
The Africa Report

URL: https://www.theafricareport.com/26264/c ... azzaville/
Category: healthNews
Published: April 15, 2020

Description: Born in Senegal, where he spent his childhood, the French doctor and researcher has maintained strong professional and emotional ties with the continent. And many African countries are already using chloroquine to treat people infected with Covid-19.

didier-raoult-senegal.jpg

On 24 March, Professor Didier Raoult slammed the door on the circle of researchers who were supposed to advise the French president on the pandemic. Disagreeing with the containment policy adopted by France, which favours mass screening, the iconoclastic infectiologist has just been disavowed by his peers, who are reluctant to endorse the use of hydroxychloroquine against coronavirus. On Thursday 9 April, Raoult could measure the progress made when President Emmanuel Macron travelled especially to Marseilles to talk to him in order to “take stock of the question of treatment.” This was a strong political gesture in favour of Raoult’s theses, whose promotion of the use of hydroxychloroquine to treat coronavirus patients has been the subject of much controversy for several weeks.
Pre-COVID-19 era
A specialist in emerging tropical infectious diseases at Marseille’s Faculty of Medical and Paramedical Sciences and at the Institut Hospitalo-Universitaire (IHU) Méditerranée Infection, the long-haired professor with the pepper and salt beard was still largely unknown to the general public at the end of February when his views on a chloroquine-based coronavirus treatment began to be heard. Since then, the Frenchman has seen his media and digital fame take off. And in the ranks of its most fervent supporters, the African continent is not to be outdone. Is it because the chemical compound he uses to treat his patients, hydroxychloroquine, is well known on the continent, where it has long been used to treat malaria? In two publications exposing tests carried out on some 20 patients, then on 80, the researcher and his teams conclude that “hydroxychloroquine combined with azithromycin is effective in the treatment of COVID-19”. This quinine derivative is currently the subject of several studies. Those carried out by Professor Raoult have indeed aroused reservations among many experts, who reproach him for not having respected standard scientific protocols. At the end of March in France, the High Council of Public Health considered that chloroquine could be administered to patients suffering from “serious forms” of the coronavirus.”
Those African countries that opt for chloroquine
At Fann Hospital in Dakar, Professor Moussa Seydi, head of the department of infectious and tropical diseases, has already administered chloroquine alone to the first 100 patients who tested positive for COVID-19. “In Marseille, Dr Didier Raoult published encouraging preliminary results. The combination of hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin should make it possible to shorten the carrying time [of the virus], in order to accelerate the healing of the sick,” Seydi told Jeune Afrique on 19 March. To use this drug, he says he relied on the study co-signed by his French counterpart. Like Senegal, Burkina Faso, Algeria and Morocco have also opted for chloroquine. On 23 March, the Ministry of Health of the Cherifian Kingdom thus requisitioned the national stocks and distributed to the directors of CHU the protocol for the prescription of chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine for confirmed cases of COVID-19. A decision inspired by Chinese research on the subject, and studies conducted by the French researcher, according to a member of the Moroccan committee in charge of the fight against the pandemic.
Born and raised in Senegal
If Professor Raoult is well known on the continent, it is also because this specialist in tropical and infectious diseases, in addition to having grown up there, has worked a lot there. It was in Dakar that the Frenchman is said to have caught the research virus. Born in 1952 in the Senegalese capital, he lives there, in the building of the Research Office for Food and African Nutrition (Orana), created by his father. This building sits opposite the Pasteur Institute in Dakar which houses the frontline laboratory in the fight against the epidemic in Senegal, and is where this son of a nurse and a military doctor stationed at the capital’s main hospital, took his first steps. A childhood marked by happy memories of playing on the beach at Anse Bernard, made the move “complicated” when the young Didier Raoult arrived in Marseille at the age of 9. “Being partly Senegalese, I can’t help but feel concerned by what’s happening in Africa,” he says in a video addressed to the Senegalese group eMédia on 7 April. In 2008, Raoult established a joint research unit at his IHU in the Senegalese capital dedicated to communicable infectious diseases – one of Raoult’s two African teams with the Algiers team. The latter claims to produce 10% of scientific publications in the country of Teranga. “He wanted to have a lot of field staff: epidemiologists, virologists and bacteriologists,” explains one of his close friends, epidemiologist and biologist Cheikh Sokhna, team leader at the IHU Méditerranée Infection in Marseille.
Research on all fronts
Sokhna, also a Senegalese, is director of research at the Institut de recherche pour le développement (IRD), and regularly exchanges with Professor Raoult. This week, IHU’s Senegalese team of about thirty people was due to submit a research project to the Senegalese Ministry of Health on the protocol of the chloroquine-azithromycin combination. An encouraging sign, according to Sokhna, is that the prevalence of coronavirus seems to be lower in areas where the use of antimalarial drugs such as chloroquine or mefloquine is frequent. “This can be seen very crudely. But other factors will have to be taken into account before any definitive conclusions can be drawn,” adds the enthusiastic and cautious researcher, who is usually based in Marseille but is currently on a long-term mission in Dakar. This mixed research unit is far from being the only innovation driven by Didier Raoult in Africa. In 2012, the French researcher installed a MALDI-TOF at the main hospital in Dakar: a mass spectrometer that can detect bacteria in a few hours, compared to the usual two to three days with traditional methods. Then, starting in 2015, he set up three small laboratories in Dakar and two villages in the Fatick region (Centre-West), three small laboratories – points of care (POC), in the jargon of the milieu – which allow blood or saliva to be taken and the origin of the disease or fever to be quickly given so that the nurses can propose an effective remedy in good time. Didier Raoult launches research all over Senegal. On malaria, borreliosis, rickettsiosis, malnutrition, hand washing – “which can reduce diarrhoeal diseases by 50% and respiratory diseases by 30%”. The French doctor was already working with his Senegalese teams on other less severe forms of the coronavirus family that existed in the country, causing colds and pneumopathies.
“Big African brother”
Every year, since 2008, he comes to spend a week in Dakar, participating in the IRD’s scientific day organized by Cheikh Sokhna, which brings together health actors and NGOs. It was on this occasion that he met two renowned scientists: the parasitologist Oumar Gaye, from the Cheikh-Anta-Diop University of Dakar (Ucad), and the pharmacist-colonel Souleymane Mboup, virologist and bacteriologist. They will join the scientific board of the IHU Méditerranée Infection, where the second will succeed the first. All these names join the large community of African researchers gathered around the Marseille-based professor, including the Congolese Jean Akiana, from the Marien Ngouabi University in Brazzaville, the Algerian Idir Bitam, from the National Veterinary College in Algiers, and the Malian Ogobara Doumbo (who died in 2018). They all consider their peer as a “big African brother”. Not to mention his former doctoral students, with whom he has plans to create cutting-edge laboratories in Guinea-Conakry. Described as an anti-conformist in the fight against dogma, familiar with the terrain but resistant to the beaten track, Professor Raoult does not hesitate to travel to the African countryside. “It’s an elephant that likes to come into contact with gorillas,” says Dr. Jean Akiana, director of health technologies at the Ministry of Health and a researcher at the National Public Health Laboratory in Brazzaville. Interested in the transmission of bacteria from animals to humans, and vice versa, Raoult also went to meet gorillas in the Lésio-Louna reserve, in the Pool region, in south-eastern Congo-Brazzaville, to analyse their microorganisms and compare their residues with human faeces. “Picornavirus of the same family as coronavirus was found in the gorillas’ faeces. If we see Ebola genes, it could be a warning,” says Jean Akiana. Akiana recently received a credit from Professor Raoult’s laboratory to travel to the Tchimpounga reserve to check whether chimpanzees might be the cause of the wild polio virus that struck Pointe-Noire in 2015. The Marseille-based professor also travelled to several departments such as Likouala, Sangha and the Plateaux to prospect for new micro-organisms with no immediate link to an identified outbreak. Samples that, when examined in Marseille, could help to take the lead when new epidemics occur. In Algiers, a team made up of 100% Algerian teaching and research staff, is working on the final establishment of a research laboratory. The joint unit based in the Algerian capital is also working on infectious disease surveillance, taking advantage of the facilities of the Marseille-based institute.
Without foreigners, “no science in France”
“Its main objective is to help French-speaking countries, to transfer cutting-edge technology and to train young researchers in these innovative diagnostic tools,” says Sokhna. But Raoult, on the other hand, also knows very well what his country’s science owes to the African continent. Critical of the restrictions imposed by the French administration in terms of the time it takes to obtain a visa, he believes that today the French scientific community relies above all on the contribution of doctoral students from the Maghreb and sub-Saharan Africa. During Emmanuel Macron’s visit, the Head of State was welcomed by a team of young researchers from Algeria, Morocco, Mali and Burkina Faso. “In France, 50% of PhD students are foreigners. Without foreigners, there is no French science,” Raoult pointed out at a conference in 2013. At the time, the French researcher praised the work of the émigrés who are part of his team, the “engine of war” in scientific research. “The best, the most intelligent, the most dynamic, those who work on Sundays are only Sub-Saharan Africans and North Africans. That’s it! That’s the way it is.”
Free spirit
The theme of the conference? “Disobedience at the heart of the research innovation process”. Raoult is known for not embarrassing himself in manners and freeing himself from doctrine, insulted by some, adulated by others, Raoult is a lasting figure. And he doesn’t seem to care. “I couldn’t imagine [my studies] triggering passions of this nature, I don’t even know where they come from,” he says in a video posted online on 8 April, in which he announces the imminent results of his new study, this time involving 1,000 patients. According to the French press, the professor would have presented last Thursday to Emmanuel Macron his results, which establish a rate of virological cure of his patients of more than 91%. Accustomed to not being listened to by politicians, who take researchers “for strange birds”, Professor Raoult, says he is “guided by curiosity and exploratory research”. Will he be able to rally Macron to his cause? In a recent Odoxa barometer, Raoult the iconoclast, appears in any case in second place among the favourite personalities of the French.
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This scientist suggested a drug to treat Covid-19. 'Fact checkers' branded him fake news

Postby smix » Sat Apr 25, 2020 3:28 am

This scientist suggested a drug to treat Covid-19. 'Fact checkers' branded him fake news
RT

URL: https://www.rt.com/op-ed/484102-raoult- ... treatment/
Category: Politics
Published: March 26, 2020

Description: Amid a pandemic panic over the coronavirus, evidence for a possibly effective treatment has been denounced as ‘fake news’ – even when offered by a renowned scientist with decades of experience. Take Didier Raoult, a French microbiologist with undeniable expertise, even if some of his views are about as eccentric as his appearance. Though he may look like he just stepped out of an Alexandre Dumas novel, the director of the Mediterranean University Hospital Institute in Marseille cited not one but three different studies from China showing that the anti-malaria drug called chloroquine has been effective in treating Covid-19 patients.
#chloroquine Pr Didier Raoult : «C'est quand les patients ont des formes modérées, moyennes, ou qui commencent à s'aggraver, qu'il faut les traiter. A ce moment là on contrôle les virus qui se multiplient. Quand ils sont rentrés en réanimation, le problème ce n'est plus le virus»
— Alex (@AlexLeroy90) March 25, 2020

That did not stop Le Monde, France’s biggest newspaper, of declaring his February 25 video as “partially false.” Raoult’s 'sin' was to argue that the common anti-malaria drug used widely for decades resulted in “dramatic improvements” among those afflicted by the virus. As a result of Le Monde’s fact-check, anyone attempting to share Dr. Raoult’s videos on Facebook gets a banner saying the information therein was “partially false” as “determined by independent fact-checkers.” The main argument put forward by those critical of the drug is that more testing is required before it can be officially approved as treatment for the coronavirus. As the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) puts it, “There are no currently available data from Randomized Clinical Trials…to inform clinical guidance on the use, dosing, or duration of hydroxychloroquine” treatments for Covid-19. Which is fair enough, but last time I checked, there was a pandemic going on, with billions of people locked in their homes and all business grinding to a halt across the globe, over apocalyptic predictions of hospitals brimming with corpses due to this coronavirus. Should any kind of treatment – especially a drug that has been used safely for decades to treat something else, with side effects meticulously documented – be so cavalierly rejected, under the circumstances? Do “experts” really think the world has the luxury of waiting for months or even years for their controlled lab studies? As for the fact-checkers, shouldn’t they have applied the same rigor to the models used to scare everyone into hoarding toilet paper and setting off a depression orders of magnitude worse than anything the world has ever seen? To ask these questions is to answer them, yet no one seems to bother. Nor is this sort of selective blindness endemic to France; across the Atlantic, the mainstream media raised their voices in unison against chloroquine after US President Donald Trump brought it up as a possible treatment – apparently referring to Dr. Raoult’s work. They went so far as to widely circulate a deliberately misleading story about an Arizona couple that ate fish tank cleaner – chloroquine phosphate, clearly labeled not for human consumption – as somehow Trump’s fault. Some of them quietly amended it to specify the difference, but long after the original story – implying they took the actual medication praised by the president – literally went viral and poisoned the minds of millions. Worse yet, as a result of this media blitz, the governor of Nevada actually banned using chloroquine to treat Covid-19 patients this week, saying there was “no consensus among experts or Nevada doctors” that the anti-malaria drug can treat coronavirus sufferers. There were no angry editorials denouncing Steve Sisolak, a Democrat, for letting people die or the coronavirus rather than have them treated with a drug endorsed by the Republican president and the media’s favorite hate object. One would think the world paralyzed with fear of the invisible death would pounce on every possible solution, no matter how unlikely it seems. That’s what we’re shown in Hollywood disaster movies, after all. Yet when such a solution presents itself, it is dismissed and denounced as “not proven”! We’re supposed to blindly trust apocalyptic models produced by panic-mongering political hacks, but ignore the man who says the drug brought him back from the brink of death, even though his story can be easily verified and theirs cannot. “Preferring opinions to facts is a disease,” Dr. Raoult told the French magazine Marianne last week. Just so. I don’t know if hydroxychloroquine works on Covid-19. Dr. Raoult seems to believe so, and he’s not alone. In the absence of better solutions – and locking billions of people in their homes indefinitely is not one – don’t we owe humanity to at least try? What do we have to lose? In the three months or so since the coronavirus first appeared in China, there has been a lot of conflicting, confusing and outright false information about it. One thing that has consistently proven true, however, is that the biggest obstacle in effectively battling its spread and treating the afflicted has been the obtuse insistence of the political and medical establishment on blindly following their rules. If the virus is truly threatening to kill millions, as they say, they would not value procedures over saving lives. Nevertheless, they persist. It makes one wonder why.
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Hydroxychloroquine Has about 90 Percent Chance of Helping COVID-19 Patients

Postby smix » Wed Apr 29, 2020 8:14 pm

Hydroxychloroquine Has about 90 Percent Chance of Helping COVID-19 Patients
Association of American Physicians and Surgeons

URL: https://aapsonline.org/hcq-90-percent-chance/
Category: healthNews
Published: April 29, 2020

Description: In a letter to Gov. Doug Ducey of Arizona, the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS) presents a frequently updated table of studies that report results of treating COVID-19 with the anti-malaria drugs chloroquine (CQ) and hydroxychloroquine (HCQ, Plaquenil). To date, the total number of reported patients treated with HCQ, with or without zinc and the widely used antibiotic azithromycin, is 2,333, writes AAPS, in observational data from China, France, South Korea, Algeria, and the U.S. Of these, 2,137 or 91.6 percent improved clinically. There were 63 deaths, all but 11 in a single retrospective report from the Veterans Administration where the patients were severely ill. The antiviral properties of these drugs have been studied since 2003. Particularly when combined with zinc, they hinder viral entry into cells and inhibit replication. They may also prevent overreaction by the immune system, which causes the cytokine storm responsible for much of the damage in severe cases, explains AAPS. HCQ is often very helpful in treating autoimmune diseases such as lupus and rheumatoid arthritis. Additional benefits shown in some studies, AAPS states, is to decrease the number of days when a patient is contagious, reduce the need for ventilators, and shorten the time to clinical recovery. Peer-reviewed studies published from January through April 20, 2020, provide clear and convincing evidence that HCQ may be beneficial in COVID-19, especially when used early, states AAPS. Unfortunately, although it is perfectly legal to prescribe drugs for new indications not on the label, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has recommended that CQ and HCQ should be used for COVID-19 only in hospitalized patients in the setting of a clinical study if available. Most states are making it difficult for physicians to prescribe or pharmacists to dispense these medications. As the letter to Gov. Ducey notes, “Many nations, including Turkey and India, are protecting medical workers and contacts of infected persons prophylactically. According to worldometers.info, deaths per million persons from COVID-19 as of Apr 27 are 167 in the U.S., 33 in Turkey, and 0.6 in India.” After Morocco and Algeria began using HCQ, a trend break and sharp reduction in their COVID-19 case fatality rate occurred. Vaccines and results of randomized double-blind controlled trials of new drugs are at best months away. But patients are dying now, while affordable, long-used drugs would be available except for government restrictions, AAPS states. The Association of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS) has represented physicians of all specialties in all states since 1943. The AAPS motto is omnia pro aegroto, meaning everything for the patient.





In War on COVID-19 Doctors Need Freedom to Use “Weapons” At Hand
Association of American Physicians and Surgeons

URL: https://aapsonline.org/in-war-on-covid- ... s-at-hand/
Category: healthNews
Published: April 8, 2020

Description: A recent poll of more than 6,000 doctors from 30 countries found that 37 percent rated hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) as the best treatment for novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19). Yet, during a recent webinar on COVID-19, doctors across the United States described threats from many governors and state medical boards for prescribing HCQ and azithromycin “off label” for non-hospitalized COVID-19 patients. It was shocking to hear that our front-line warriors are not only having their medical decisions blocked, but are being threatened with disciplinary actions, and even loss of license in some states. The international poll conducted by Sermo highlighted crucial differences between the U.S. and other countries. Many fewer U.S. physicians–only 23 percent—had prescribed HCQ, while 72 percent of Spanish physicians used it as their first choice in COVID-19. Also, in the U.S. it was most commonly used for hospitalized high-risk patients with severe symptoms, while in other countries it was equally used for out­ patients with mild symptoms at onset of disease. HCQ has been FDA-approved for malaria since World War II, and it is now also approved for treating lupus and rheumatoid arthritis. These findings mean the U.S. lags behind other countries in using HCQ to prevent infection, to reduce the time that a person sheds virus and can infect others, and to keep patients out of hospitals and off ventilators. Basic science and clinical outcomes studies from more than 10 countries show that HCQ works both before and after COVID-19 enters the cells. It increases zinc transport across the cell membrane, and the two work together to keep the virus from multiplying itself using our own cells’ machinery. It is the viral multiplication or replication that triggers the inflammatory cascade, or cytokine storm that damages organs, especially the lungs leading to the acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) and deaths. Adding the antibiotic azithromycin, or possibly doxycycline for elderly with contraindications, shows a synergistic effect, as reported from France, China, and several clinical outcomes studies in the U.S. A new 2020 study showed an additional way that HCQ works: it prevents the virus from attaching to host cell surface molecules. The authors conclude: “Our data do support the use of chloroquine and preferentially hydroxychloroquine as a first intention therapy for patients infected with SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19).” On Mar 28, 2020, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued an Emergency Use Authorization for HCQ to treat COVID-19—but restricted this approval to hospitalized patients. That restriction means loss of the critical early window of opportunity to achieve four urgent goals to stop the pandemic: (1) prevent the virus attaching to host cells, (2) reduce viral replication that prolongs time of infectivity and spread, (3) reduce the number of hospitalizations and need for intubation and mechanical ventilators, and (4) reduce risk of multi-organ damage and death or permanent lung impairment after recovery. At the Apr 4 Corona Virus Task Force Briefing, reporters continually focused on the potential shortage of ventilators, yet no one was asking about using effective medication approaches to keep patients from becoming so critically ill that they need mechanical ventilation. When World Health Organization and U.S. experts say there is “no evidence that any medicine can prevent or cure” COVID-19, they correctly mean We don’t yet have a randomized, placebo-controlled, double blind clinical trial (RCT). But designing, setting up, conducting, and analyzing any RCT takes years. And that is only one form of evidence in medicine. Case studies (pejoratively called “anecdotes”) and decades of safe use worldwide provide other valid sources of clinical outcomes evidence, which have guided physicians for more than 2,000 years. As a matter of historical record, we had no RCT “proving” that smoking caused lung cancer, but that did not stop common-sense recommendations by the Surgeon General and physicians who advised patients to stop smoking cigarettes, based on clinical outcomes showing higher lung cancer and heart attack deaths in smokers. We have no time for an RCT. We can’t wait months for a vaccine. People are dying every day. Staggering numbers of people have lost jobs, incomes, and ability to live life normally. We cannot ignore the well-known fact that times of massive unemployment lead to lost lives, from drug addiction, depression/suicide, domestic violence, and losing access to medical care. These losses could exceed those from the virus if the country remains shut down for a prolonged period. This is real damage, not just theoretical, and it is escalating every day. In this war against the invisible virus, doctors–our soldiers on the front line– simply must be free to use the medicines at hand, to the best of their ability and judgment for each patient, free of politicians and bureaucrats’ second-guessing and threats. Doctors must be able to prescribe, pharmacists to dispense, and patients to take already-approved drugs for this novel use against a novel enemy. About 20 percent of all prescriptions are for “off-label” uses. The FDA may restrict pharmaceutical companies marketing for off-label uses, but it has no authority to interfere with doctors’ prescribing them off-label. That is called the practice of medicine. It is unprecedented—and lethal—for state governors and medical boards to forbid the freedom to prescribe long-approved and safely used medications. America urgently needs a Presidential directive to remove the FDA’s red tape and state political obstacles to save lives, reduce the rate of spread of COVID-19. Hospitals must quickly be fully opened to treat patients with urgent medical and surgical needs beyond COVID-19 to avoid losing hospitals and medical staff. We should . consider India’s approach with a national recommended guide for physicians. Stop this patchwork quilt of governors’ arbitrarily deciding what prescriptions can and cannot be used in each state. In a war to save lives and our country, we must fight with all the weapons we have at hand, even if not yet “proven.”



AAPS Sues the FDA to End Its Arbitrary Restrictions on Hydroxychloroquine
Association of American Physicians and Surgeons

URL: https://aapsonline.org/hcqsuit/
Category: healthNews
Published: June 2, 2020

Description: Today, June 2, 2020, the Association of American Physicians & Surgeons (AAPS) filed a lawsuit, AAPS v. FDA, against the Food and Drug Administration to end its arbitrary interference with the use of hydroxychloroquine (HCQ), which President Trump and other world leaders have taken as a prophylaxis against COVID-19. Two million doses of HCQ are being sent by the Trump Administration to Brazil to help medical workers there safeguard themselves against the spread of the virus. But at the same time the FDA continues to block Americans’ access to this medication. HCQ has been approved as safe by the FDA for 65 years, and the CDC states on its website that “CDC has no limits on the use of hydroxychloroquine for the prevention of malaria.” More than 150 million doses have been donated to the strategic national stockpile controlled by the federal government, but unjustified FDA restrictions limit its use to only hospitalized patients for whom a clinical study is unavailable. Hospitals are even returning HCQ to the stockpile because they are not able to use it effectively. “It is shocking that medical workers in Brazil will have access to HCQ as a prophylaxis while Americans are blocked by the FDA from accessing the same medication for the same use,” observes AAPS Executive Director Jane Orient, M.D. “There is no legal or factual basis for the FDA to limit use of HCQ,” states AAPS General Counsel Andrew Schlafly. “The FDA’s restrictions on HCQ for Americans are completely indefensible in court.” Many foreign nations, including China, India, South Korea, Costa Rica, United Arab Emirates, and Turkey, use HCQ for early treatment and prevention of COVID-19, AAPS points out. “Entrenched, politically biased officials at the FDA should not be allowed to interfere with Americans’ right to access medication donated to the federal government for public use,” Schlafly says. “By preventing Americans’ use of HCQ as a prophylaxis, the FDA is infringing on First Amendment rights to attend religious services or participate in political events such as political conventions, town halls, and rallies in an important election year.” “FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn states that the FDA does not interfere with physicians’ ability to prescribe HCQ, and yet at the same time the FDA denies access by millions of Americans to 150 million doses of it in the national stockpile,” Schlafly adds. “This irrational hoarding by government is an abuse of power.” The Association of American Physicians and Surgeons (AAPS) has represented physicians of all specialties in all states since 1943. The AAPS motto is omnia pro aegroto, meaning everything for the patient.



AAPS News June 2020 – AAPS Sues FDA
Association of American Physicians and Surgeons

URL: https://aapsonline.org/aaps-news-june-2 ... -sues-fda/
Category: healthNews
Published: June 6, 2020

Description: While more than 100,000 American deaths have been attributed to COVID-19, 150 million doses of hydroxychloroquine, donated by manufacturers, are deteriorating in government warehouses. There is an aggressive campaign to portray HCQ at first as “unproven” and now as also “unsafe.” Following the lead of the Food and Drug Administration’s Emergency Use Authorization (EUA), which prohibits use of HCQ being stored in the Strategic National Stockpile (SNS) outside of hospitals, most states have placed unprecedented restrictions on physicians’ ability to prescribe HCQ “off-label” for COVID-19 (tinyurl.com/y7oc65gn).

aaps-v-fda-hydroxychloroquine-750x440.jpg

In its lawsuit (http://aapsonline.org/hcqsuit), filed in June in federal court in the Western District of Michigan, AAPS asks the court to enjoin the enforcement of the restrictions in the Mar 28 EUA; to make available and distribute promptly, for the benefit of the public, HCQ from the SNS; and to enjoin FDA, the Biomedical Advance Research & Development Authority (BARDA), and HHS from impeding the distribution, sale, or purchase of HCQ by members of the public during the COVID-19 pandemic. Through a biased, improper process, FDA officials from prior administrations acted contrary to the wishes of President Donald Trump by arbitrarily limiting use of HCQ. Rick Bright, Ph.D., former head of BARDA, who is an outspoken critic of President Trump and is personally opposed to making HCQ widely available, distorted the agency process to unjustifiably limit access. Bright is also biased by his pre-conceived opinion in favor of an expensive, proprietary antiviral medication developed by Gilead Sciences, remdesivir. He repeatedly advised HHS officials to acquire the existing doses, to secure future doses as they were produced, and to “on-shore” all steps of the remdesivir supply chain. These actions should have caused his recusal from the decision-making process about HCQ. According to Bright’s whistleblower complaint against the Trump Administration, Janet Woodcock, director of the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, also played a pivotal role in pushing for the EUA. Woodcock simultaneously occupied a top position in a public-private operation designed to approve new vaccines for COVID-19, and she reportedly communicated with a Wall Street analyst concerning such development. A safe, inexpensive treatment or prophylactic would diminish demand for a new drug or vaccine.
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Safety
HCQ has been approved as safe by the FDA for 65 years, and is safer than numerous medications that are widely available over-the-counter (OTC), including anti-depressants, sleeping pills, bronchodilators, Tylenol, and even aspirin. The “safety profile” with respect to new uses of a medication previously approved by the FDA is virtually never studied, and there is no rational basis for delaying new uses of previously approved medication by requiring such studies. Harvey A. Risch, professor of epidemiology at the Yale School of Public Health and Yale School of Medicine, stated: “Hydroxychloroquine+azithromycin has been used as standard-of-care in more than 300,000 older adults with multicomorbidities, with estimated proportion diagnosed with cardiac arrhythmias attributable to the medications 47/100,000 users, of which estimated mortality is <20%, 9/100,000 users.” He noted that 10,000 Americans are dying each week from COVID-19. Five studies, he writes, including two controlled clinical trials, have demonstrated significant major outpatient treatment efficacy. He concluded that “these medications need to be widely available and promoted immediately for physicians” (Am J Epidemiol, May 27, 2020, https://tinyurl.com/y9yfb2h9). Dr. Jon Giles, an epidemiologist and rheumatologist at Columbia University Department of Medicine, told National Public Radio (NPR) that HCQ is a “very, very safe drug; it’s been used for over 75 years. When I give someone [HCQ], I don’t get an ECG or do blood monitoring” (tinyurl.com/y7enya9w). More than 25 articles since 1982 published in peer-reviewed medical journals have reported on the safety of HCQ, and these articles are included in the PubMed database.
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Harms of Restricting Access to Prevention
Dr. Risch states that “an outpatient treatment that prevents hospitalization is desperately needed [for COVID-19].” In addition to the preventable mortality and morbidity, devastating harm results from lockdowns and fear of acquiring an untreatable illness. The AAPS complaint states that irrational interference with the use of HCQ as a prophylaxis interferes with the political process, for example, national political conventions, and with rights to associate, assemble, and attend religious services. Defendants violate the equal protection guarantee implicit in the Due Process Clause of the Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution by discriminating based on a patient’s hospitalization status, illness status, and access to clinical trials. Defendants lack the authority to override the discretion of a medical professional to prescribe off-label uses of FDA-approved drugs. The decision-making underlying the EUA was tainted by bias, and thus it is arbitrary and capricious. The Administrative Procedure Act directs courts to “hold unlawful and set aside agency action…found to be … contrary to constitutional right, power, privilege or immunity.” 5 U.S.C. § 706(2)(B).
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Misinformation Keeps COVID-19 Alive
In countries that started using HCQ for prophylaxis and early treatment, death rates soon began to decrease, and the ratio of recoveries to deaths increased dramatically, e.g. in Cyprus, Costa Rica, Russia, Monaco, Algeria, Turkey, Israel, Italy, Peru, Honduras, Indonesia, United Arab Emirates, South Africa, and Portugal. See graphs on twitter.com; search @Covid19Crusher. But WHO has now recommended that use of chloroquine (CQ) and HCQ for COVID-19 be suspended, and is also suspending their use in a global clinical trial called Solidarity (tinyurl.com/y935al4c). “What a difference one week makes in medical practice,” opined Milton Packer, M.D., a consultant for many drug companies, who argues in MedPage Today that prescribing HCQ is “practicing politics” (tinyurl.com/yajxf9bx). The sudden focus on safety stems largely from a heavily publicized Lancet article (https://tinyurl.com/ydg4j2td) that failed to confirm benefit and claimed decreased in-hospital survival and increased ventricular arrhythmias with CQ or HCQ. Does Lancet practice politics? One can point to about 40 tweets by editor Richard Horton that appear to be anti-Trump, pro-China, or pro-WHO (twitter.com/richardhorton1). From Apr 14, when the last patient was hospitalized, until May 22, when Trump pushed for lifting shutdowns, there were only 5 weeks for warp-speed publication. More than 120 researchers and medical professionals from around the world signed an open letter to the four coauthors and the editor with questions concerning the statistical analysis and data integrity (tinyurl.com/ycp94psp), including refusal to release codes or data and the lack of an ethics review (tinyurl.com/y82pw9c8). Lancet issued an “expression of concern” (tinyurl.com/y9zlw8fp), as did NEJM regarding the database used in an article that had three of the same authors as the Lancet article (tinyurl.com/yc6x6z9d). The Lancet article cited an influential Brazilian study that found higher mortality together with more instances of QTc interval greater than 500 milliseconds in the “high-dosage” group of severely ill COVID-19 patients treated with CQ (JAMA 4/24/20, https://tinyurl.com/y98yv3ho). An open letter signed by about 25 Brazilian scientists, whose work has been cited more than 69,000 times, noted that lethal doses of CQ were given to “debilitated patients, many in severe conditions and with comorbidities.” They criticized methodologic errors in this and other studies in prestigious journals, such as “randomizing” higher-risk patients to higher doses (https://tinyurl.com/yc8kjrgq). “These studies indicate that some scientists either forgot how ‘science’ is done or that there is a huge effort to disprove, whatever it takes, that HCQ works,” they conclude. The study’s disregard of ethical standards is under judicial investigation by the Ministério Público Federal (Portaria Nº40 de 20 de Abril de 2020), and is being followed by other branches of the Brazilian Government, states Prof. Paolo Marinho de Andrade Zanotto of the University of São Paulo in a letter to JAMA editor-in-chief Howard Bauchner, demanding retraction of the article.
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Nations Respond to WHO on CQ and HCQ
Indonesia, the world’s fourth most populous nation, is considering how to react. It had told doctors to use the drugs to treat all COVID-19 patients with symptoms from mild to severe. The country has ramped up production of HCQ since March, granting two dozen licenses to local manufacturers, who have churned out millions of doses (https://tinyurl.com/yaq5edq2). France, Italy, and Belgium moved to halt the use of HCQ (tinyurl.com/ybkpm3a5). Spain will not, and Germany is at this time undecided (tinyurl.com/y7ssdxmu). The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) backed the use of HCQ as a preventive against coronavirus, after the WHO action (tinyurl.com/yba5g7uh). Seeing success with CQ or HCQ, Niger (tinyurl.com/y7as9vud), Algeria (tinyurl.com/yd2acram), and Morocco (tinyurl.com/y7dm4m9j) will not stop using them. President Trump announced that he is ending U.S. membership in WHO. The U.S. has sent Brazil 2 million doses of HCQ to be used as a prophylactic and early treatment for medical workers who are infected with COVID-19 (tinyurl.com/y92rh4t8).
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LancetGate?
The second of the four coauthors on the Lancet study, Sapan Desai, is CEO and owner of Surgisphere, source of much of the data and subject of an investigative report published May 29 (https://tinyurl.com/ychr2e9f). Lancet and NEJM retracted the articles at the request of other authors, who stated that Surgisphere was not cooperating with an independent data review (https://tinyurl.com/y8n8asqp).
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NEJM vs. HCQ Prophylaxis
In an RCT trial of HCQ for post-exposure prophylaxis of COVID-19, researchers concluded that “after high-risk or moderate-risk exposure to Covid-19, hydroxychloroquine did not prevent illness compatible with Covid-19 or confirmed infection when used as postexposure prophylaxis within 4 days after exposure” (https://tinyurl.com/y92dpqyk). Points to note:
* 17% fewer illnesses with HCQ: A new illness compatible with COVID-19 developed within 14 days in 49 of 414 (11.8%) of subjects receiving HCQ and 58 of 407 (14.3%) getting placebo. The difference was not statistically significant.
* Underpowered: To detect a 50% difference with 90% probability would have required 750 subjects in each group. Recruitment was stopped early for “futility.”
* No arrhythmias or serious adverse effects: There was one hospitalization in each group and no deaths.
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No FDA Authority to Regulate Medical Practice
FDA has expressly recognized the freedom that medical professionals possess to use and prescribe approved drugs off-label: “[O]nce a [drug] product has been approved for marketing, a physician may prescribe it for uses or in treatment regimens of patient populations that are not included in approved labeling.” 59 Fed. Reg. 59, 820, 59, 821-22 (Nov. 18, 1994). “FDA regulations have attempted to strike a balance between giving physicians the freedom to use their best clinical judgment and preventing drug manufacturers from inappropriately influencing prescribing practice” (https://tinyurl.com/yaop3m75). Written prescriptions do not have a place to write the indication, and this has not traditionally been required. Physicians argue that it violates patients’ privacy.
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Engineering the “New Normal”
Former CMS Administrator Donald Berwick, M.D., of the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, outlines the “choices” to be made in a post-COVID-19 world (JAMA 6/2/20). “Is this the time for equity, when the evidence of global interconnectedness and the vulnerabilities of marginalized people will catalyze at last the fair and compassionate redistribution of wealth, security, and opportunity from the few and fortunate to the rest? This virus awaits an answer. So will the next one,” he writes. Perhaps the new normal will “embrace trusted authority as foundations for reducing harmful, wasteful, and unscientific variation in care.” Will the office visit, for many traditional purposes, become a dinosaur? [One unspoken feature of the virtual visit is that the telehealth platform will likely record everything and enable enforcement of conformity.] Since people can’t travel, the reduction in carbon emissions has made the planet “a healthier celestial body.” Will policymakers see that we don’t return to normal production and commerce? Will the new order [central planning, socialism, impoverishment, less mobility] “accomplish more for human health and well-being than any vaccine or miracle drug ever can”?
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Mandatory COVID-19 Vaccine Recommended
The Health Law Section of the New York State Bar Association (NYSBA) recommends that COVID-19 vaccination should be mandatory for all New Yorkers except those whose doctors exempt them, “as soon as a safe and viable vaccine becomes available,” citing Jacobson v. Massachusetts, the 1905 U.S. Supreme Court case that upheld the authority of states to enforce compulsory vaccination laws. “The current pandemic shows us how unsafe we all are when we face a virulent contagious disease without a safe and effective vaccine, widely administered,” said attorney Hermes Fernandez, (https://tinyurl.com/y83dfqxv). NYSBA also proposes mandatory ethical [rationing] guidelines for all providers in case of shortages (tinyurl.com/yb4gejez). The goal of the Warp Speed vaccine effort is to vaccinate 300 million Americans by January. Tests in hamsters and monkeys will help winnow down leading candidates. “If something’s really bad, we’ll get rid of it,” a program official said. Leading technologies, delivering code for the virus’s spike protein via mRNA or an adenovirus, have yet to lead to an approved vaccine (Science 5/15/20).
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Tip of the Month: Prescriptions do not have to be filled by pharmacies in your state. If local pharmacies refuse to fill your prescriptions for hydroxychloroquine, then recommend use of online pharmacies located elsewhere in the United States. They are also less likely to file a false complaint against you with your state medical board, which some jealous or politically motivated local pharmacists have done against physicians. Not all states require their pharmacies to receive a diagnosis on a prescription for hydroxychloroquine, and Texas recently dropped its requirement when physicians can cite a privacy concern.
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Justice Dept. scrutinizes White House-connected doctor linked to disputed coronavirus treatment

Postby smix » Sun May 03, 2020 4:51 pm

Justice Dept. scrutinizes White House-connected doctor linked to disputed coronavirus treatment
Washington Post

URL: https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics ... story.html
Category: Politics
Published: May 1, 2020

Description: Federal prosecutors are examining the communications of a New York family doctor whose work has been discussed on Fox News and who has been in touch with the White House to tout an anti-malarial as a treatment for the novel coronavirus, according to people contacted as part of the inquiry.



The examination of Vladimir “Zev” Zelenko’s records began when an associate, conservative commentator Jerome Corsi, accidentally sent an email intended for Zelenko to another “Z” name in his address book — federal prosecutor Aaron Zelinsky, who as a member of special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s team had spent months scrutinizing Corsi’s activities during the 2016 presidential election. During episodes of his daily podcast this week and in a YouTube video he posted late Thursday in response to questions from The Washington Post, Corsi said that Zelinsky responded to the unexpected email by reaching out to Corsi’s lawyer and requesting all of Corsi’s communications with Zelenko. Corsi said he and Zelenko are collaborating on a website designed to connect people with doctors. They have acted lawfully, Corsi added, but he plans to cooperate with the request and has handed over his communications. Zelinsky is tasked now with investigating coronavirus-related crimes in the Maryland U.S. attorney’s office, as part of a directive from U.S. Attorney General William P. Barr to prioritize such cases. The department already has charged a medley of fraudsters for peddling fake cures, selling personal protective equipment they didn’t actually have or running more complicated Medicare reimbursement schemes, and officials say tips are coming in droves. Gregory Rigano, a lawyer who said he is working with Zelenko, said in a brief telephone conversation Thursday night that they had not been contacted by federal prosecutors and that he was not aware of any possible law enforcement interest in Zelenko. “It’s not something I’m familiar with,” Rigano said. “We’re just saving people’s lives that have coronavirus and getting rid of this virus from America as soon as possible.” In his YouTube video, Corsi displayed the email he inadvertently sent to Zelinsky. In it, he wrote that Zelenko had “an FDA approved randomized test of HCQ underway” — a reference to hydroxychloroquine, the anti-malarial. Despite a lack of scientific evidence, President Trump has enthusiastically promoted the drug as a potential treatment for patients infected with covid-19, the respiratory illness caused by the coronavirus. Last week, the Food and Drug Administration, citing reports of “serious heart rhythm problems” associated with hydroxychloroquine, warned doctors against its use outside of a hospital or clinical trial.



By Corsi’s account, Zelinsky went to a government website that lists approved clinical trials and found no reference to Zelenko. After learning of the federal prosecutor’s interest, Corsi said he asked Zelenko about whether he had an FDA approved study — as Corsi said Zelenko had told another physician at a training event. Zelenko, Corsi said, then suggested his study was approved instead by an internal hospital panel. “I pointed out to Zelenko, ‘But it’s not registered as an FDA test, and you can’t say it is,’ ” Corsi said Thursday on YouTube, adding that he did not feel Zelenko was trying to defraud anyone, but rather did not understand what it meant to have an FDA-approved test. “I did nothing wrong. Zelenko made a mistake. He’s got no case. And we’re following all the rules,” Corsi said. He said he had turned over to Zelinsky emails and text messages between himself and Zelenko, as well as copies of his podcast and marketing materials for the website — “everything he asked for.” Corsi’s attorney, David Gray, confirmed his version of events. t is unclear how seriously prosecutors are scrutinizing the matter. A Justice Department spokesman declined to comment. But even passing interest from federal authorities into efforts to promote the anti-malarial is likely to chafe the president and his allies, particularly given the involvement of a former member of Mueller’s team. “I’m very concerned about the government intrusion here on our freedoms,” Corsi said on his podcast. “I see the government demonizing a medicine … this hydroxychloroquine, that’s been around for 70 years, and is fully FDA approved for various illness.” Trump spent weeks promoting the anti-malarial during his daily televised briefings, calling it at one point a “game-changer” that could help the nation quickly overcome the coronavirus. His comments echoed frequent segments on Fox News, some of which featured discussions of Zelenko’s work. Zelenko has said he successfully treated hundreds of suspected covid-19 patients with what he called a cocktail of hydroxychloroquine, the antibiotic azithromycin and zinc sulfate. Experts, including Trump’s leading infectious disease specialist Anthony S. Fauci, have repeatedly cautioned that while there is some anecdotal evidence the drug shows promise, its efficacy must be validated through controlled scientific studies. Zelenko consults frequently with some of Trump’s closest allies. Trump aides say he has been in contact with Chief of Staff Mark Meadows and other officials. In a recent interview, Trump attorney Rudolph W. Giuliani said he and Zelenko speak frequently — often more than once a day. “He’s a very smart doctor,” Giuliani said. “I’ve seen an analysis of Dr. Zelenko’s patient list. There are thousands of people who have been helped by it.” Corsi said he was referred to Zelenko by another doctor also interested in covid-19 and hosted Zelenko for the first time on his podcast earlier this month. Corsi’s website, speakwithanmd.com, offers people the opportunity to schedule a virtual appointment with a doctor, by clicking on a button and inputting their name and address. It advertises a “low consult fee” of $59.95, as well as “Prescriptions Delivered Right to Your Door, Same Day!” through a partner. The site claims to be linked with more than 625 health-care providers, spanning all 50 states. In a “Frequently Asked Questions” section, it says it is “designed to see and treat non-emergency type consultations,” though it lists “COVID-19” as one of many health problems its doctors can examine, along with constipation, allergies and the common cold. On his website, Corsi describes Zelenko as an unpaid “medical adviser.” Zelenko was a guest on Corsi’s podcast Sunday and explained he is working with two German scientists and will soon be publishing data from his use of hydroxychloroquine with his patients. He accused Fauci and other government scientists of opposing use of the drug for political and financial reasons.

bill-gates.jpg

“History will prove me right,” Zelenko said on Corsi’s podcast. “The difference between me and Dr. Fauci is only about 100,000 dead people.” Corsi is best known for his promotion of the false theory that former president Barack Obama was not born in the United States, a topic over which he bonded with Trump before the celebrity mogul ran for president. Corsi was in close contact with Trump associate Roger Stone during the 2016 campaign and the two men communicated frequently about WikiLeaks, as the anti-secrecy group published Democratic Party emails that U.S. officials say were stolen and provided to the group by Russian intelligence. Corsi has said he was interviewed extensively about Stone by Zelinsky and other Mueller prosecutors, who at one point drafted a plea agreement under which Corsi would have agreed that he had lied in an initial interview about WikiLeaks. Corsi ultimately refused to plead guilty, and he was not charged with a crime. Stone was convicted of lying to Congress, obstruction of an official proceeding and witness tampering and sentenced to three years and four months in prison. He is appealing. Zelinsky was notably among a group of career prosecutors who quit that case after Barr intervened to reduce the recommendation he and other prosecutors gave for Stone’s penalty.
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