Quantcast
Connect with us

Don’t fall for the America’s Frontline Doctors video: Hydroxychloroquine is not a COVID-19 cure

Published

on

Millions of people, including the president of the United States, have seen or shared a video in which a doctor falsely claims there is a cure for the coronavirus, and it’s a medley starring hydroxychloroquine.

The video shows several doctors in white coats giving a press conference outside the Supreme Court in Washington, D.C. It persists on social media despite bans from Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, and it was published by Breitbart, a conservative news site.

ADVERTISEMENT

The July 27 event was organized by Tea Party Patriots, a conservative group backed by Republican donors, and attended by U.S. Rep. Ralph Norman, R-S.C.

In the video, members of a new group called America’s Frontline Doctors touch on several unproven conspiracy theories about the coronavirus pandemic. One of the most inaccurate claims comes from Dr. Stella Immanuel, a Houston primary care physician and minister with a track record of making bizarre medical claims, such as that DNA from space aliens is being used in medical treatments.

“This virus has a cure. It is called hydroxychloroquine, zinc, and Zithromax,” Immanuel said. “I know you people want to talk about a mask. Hello? You don’t need [a] mask. There is a cure.”

As of July 27, nearly 150,000 Americans had died because of the coronavirus. Could those deaths have been prevented by a drug that’s used to treat lupus and arthritis?

No. Immanuel’s statement is wrong on several points.

ADVERTISEMENT

‘This Virus Has a Cure’

There is no known cure for COVID-19.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there is no specific antiviral treatment for the virus. Supportive care, such as rest, fluids and fever relievers, can assuage symptoms.

“There is currently no licensed medication to cure COVID-19,” according to the World Health Organization.

ADVERTISEMENT

The Cure Is ‘Hydroxychloroquine, Zinc and Zithromax’

In spite of Immanuel’s anecdotal evidence, hydroxychloroquine alone or in combination with other drugs is not a proven treatment (or cure) for COVID-19.

ADVERTISEMENT

The Food and Drug Administration has not approved hydroxychloroquine for the prevention or treatment of COVID-19. In mid-June, the FDA revoked its emergency authorization for the use of hydroxychloroquine and the related drug chloroquine in treating hospitalized COVID-19 patients.

“It is no longer reasonable to believe that oral formulations of HCQ and CQ may be effective in treating COVID-19, nor is it reasonable to believe that the known and potential benefits of these products outweigh their known and potential risks,” FDA Chief Scientist Denise M. Hinton wrote.

The WHO and the National Institutes of Health have also stopped their hydroxychloroquine studies. Among the safety issues associated with treating COVID-19 patients with hydroxychloroquine include heart rhythm problems, kidney injuries and liver problems.

ADVERTISEMENT

While some studies have found that the drug could help alleviate symptoms associated with COVID-19, the research is not conclusiveFew studies have been accepted into peer-reviewed journals. And large, randomized trials — the gold standard for clinical trials — are still needed to confirm the findings of studies conducted since the pandemic began.

In the video, Immanuel cited a 2005 study that found chloroquine — not hydroxychloroquine — was “effective in inhibiting the infection and spread of SARS CoV,” the official name for severe acute respiratory syndrome. But the drug was not tested on humans, the authors wrote that more research was needed to make any conclusions, and SARS is different from COVID-19.

‘You Don’t Need a Mask’

Health officials advise everyone to wear a mask in public.

ADVERTISEMENT

The reason has to do with how the coronavirus spreads. When an infected person coughs or sneezes, they expel respiratory droplets containing the virus. Those droplets can then land in the mouths or noses of people nearby.

Since some people infected with the coronavirus may exhibit no symptoms, public health officials say everyone should cover their face in public — even if they don’t feel sick.

“The spread of COVID-19 can be reduced when cloth face coverings are used along with other preventive measures, including social distancing, frequent handwashing, and cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched surfaces,” according to the CDC.

Our Ruling

In a viral video, Immanuel said there is a cure for COVID-19, hydroxychloroquine can treat it, and people don’t need to wear masks to prevent the spread of the virus.

ADVERTISEMENT

All of those claims are inaccurate. There is no known cure for COVID-19, hydroxychloroquine is not a proven treatment, and public health officials advise everyone to wear a face mask in public.

Immanuel’s statement is False.

 

 

Kaiser Health News (KHN) is a national health policy news service. It is an editorially independent program of the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation which is not affiliated with Kaiser Permanente.


Report typos and corrections to: [email protected].
READ COMMENTS - JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Continue Reading

Breaking Banner

Arizona swing voters are rejecting Trump’s law-and-order attacks on Joe Biden: focus group

Published

on

A focus group of Arizona voters held by NPR has found that President Donald Trump's claims that former Vice President Joe Biden will abolish the police are falling flat.

The focus group showed voters a Trump campaign ad featuring a fictitious elderly woman frantically dialing 911 when an intruder entered her house -- only to be told that the entire police department had been defunded thanks to Biden.

However, even Trump voters in the focus group found the ad to be way over the top.

Continue Reading

2020 Election

If Trump loses two more states it’s ‘ballgame over’: AP reporter

Published

on

Appearing on MSNBC's " Morning Joe," Associated Press White House correspondent Jonathan Lemire explained Donald Trump's chances of being re-elected have reached the point where, if he loses the electoral votes of one more, he will be out of luck and out of office.

Speaking with co-host Joe Scarborough, Lemire was asked where Trump stands in the battleground states he so desperately needs.

"Both campaigns agree that there are six battleground states to decide this election: Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Michigan, Arizona, North Carolina, Florida," he began. "Now the president has to play defense and has had to spend resources and had to go the past week to places like Ohio, Texas -- Georgia is another one where he has to play defense. We don't see, outside of perhaps New Hampshire, a place where Democrats have to do the same now that the Trump campaign has ceded Michigan."

Continue Reading
 

Breaking Banner

Trump’s executive orders are confusing and unconstitutional — and likely to hurt his own voters. He doesn’t care.

Published

on

As we went into the weekend, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell had washed his hands of the negotiations over the vitally necessary COVID-19 relief package, leaving Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin and former Tea Party zealot turned White House chief of staff Mark Meadows to try to hash out a deal. Word was that the Democrats had come down from their demand for $3 trillion in various relief programs to $2 trillion, while the White House stuck to its offer of $1 trillion and not a penny more. By Friday, the Senate was going home and the talks had irretrievably stalled.
Continue Reading
 
 
You need honest news coverage. Help us deliver it. Join Raw Story Investigates for $1. Go ad-free.
close-image