President Donald Trump is once again speaking about the alleged benefits of hydroxychloroquine. The drug, which is typically used to treat malaria and lupus, has been touted by the 45th president before as a coronavirus treatment, despite medical officials advising otherwise.
"I happen to be taking it. I happened to be taking it," Trump told reporters on Monday, according to The Daily Mail. "I have been taking it for about a week and a half. Every day. I take a pill every day," adding that "at some point, I'll stop." He also claimed that it's a popular drug among healthcare workers dealing with the pandemic directly. "You'd be surprised at how many people are taken and especially the frontline workers before you catch it, the frontline workers many, many are taking it."
The World Health Organization is currently warning that the "misuse of hydroxychloroquine can cause serious side effects and illness and even lead to death." This sentiment was echoed by White House health adviser Dr. Anthony Fauci, who testified to the Senate on Tuesday that "there's no guarantee that the vaccine is actually going to be effective."
Trump has been speaking about the use of hydroxychloroquine as a possible treatment for COVID-19 since March. However, there's been significant outspoken opposition on the claims from Lupus patients who had grown concerned that the drug had been bought out during the pandemic, leaving them without essential medication.
This opposition includes Sons of Anarchy star Kristen Renton, who took the president to task on Twitter. "So while you are telling people to 'try Hydroxychloroquine' (aka Plaquenil) because it 'may' help...people like myself, who need the drug daily to survive due to my lupus, can no longer obtain the drug because it's 'out of stock.' Now what am I suppose to do?"
However, there have been others who've spoken about the benefits of the drug, albeit marginally. Former Lost star Daniel Dae Kim had previously tested positive for COVID-19. Back in March, the actor listed the drugs he'd been prescribed, which included Tamiflu, a glycopyrrolate inhaler, and hydroxychloroquine, which he noted: "has been used with great success in Korea in their fight against the coronavirus."
"I won't say that it's a cure, and I won't say definitively that you should go out and use this, but what I will say is that I believe it was crucial to my recovery," Kim said. He added that he believed "the entire mixture of drugs was crucial to my recovery."