President Donald Trump keeps pushing the use of hydroxychloroquine for the treatment of COVID-19, even though health experts have repeatedly warned him that there is not enough evidence to make a definitive call on its benefits for the disease.
Even though Dr. Anthony Fauci has been outspoken in his skepticism of using hydroxychloroquine, Politico reports that other career health officials behind the scenes have “been warned not to publicly speak out and potentially contradict Trump,” even as they’ve raised concerns about “the risk to some Americans’ heart health and other complications” from taking the drug.
One career official tells Politico that Trump’s obsession with hydroxychloroquine was a “Hail Mary” intended to get the crisis over with as quickly as possible — and to reduce media focus on his administration’s lack of preparation for the pandemic.
“There’d be less focus on [hydroxychloroquine] now if we had planned better then,” the official said.
In the meantime, reports Politico, health officials like Fauci and Dr. Deborah Birx have struggled to convince the president that it’s highly unlikely the drug will be some kind of miracle cure that will get the economy back up quickly.