Donald Trump has consistently touted hydroxychloroquine, an anti-malaria drug, as a “game-changer” in the fight against the coronavirus. The CIA doesn’t see it as so. In fact, the agency has warned its employees against using the drug, The Washington Post reported.
A website for CIA staff reportedly posted this warning:
“At this point, the drug is not recommended to be used by patients except by medical professionals prescribing it as part of ongoing investigational studies. There are potentially significant side effects, including sudden cardiac death, associated with hydroxychloroquine. Its individual use in patients need to be carefully selected and monitored by a health care professional.” This was the response to an employee who asked whether they should take the drug without a prescription, according to the Post.
“Please do not obtain this medication on your own,” was reportedly added in bold type.
The CIA, however, will not confirm or deny the accuracy of the Washington Post report.
“I’m not going to address any specifics, but information the CIA provides to our global workforce has been—and will continue to be—consistent with the (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) and White House guidance,” a CIA spokesperson told The Hill.
Hydroxychloroquine is normally used to treat malaria, and in some cases to treat lupus and rheumatoid arthritis.
Listen to GHOGH with Jamarlin Martin | Episode 70: Jamarlin Martin Jamarlin goes solo to discuss the COVID-19 crisis. He talks about the failed leadership of Trump, Andrew Cuomo, CDC Director Robert Redfield, Surgeon General Jerome Adams, and New York Mayor de Blasio.
Studies on its use for COVID-19 have been inconclusive. One of the preliminary studies showed promise, but the result was later questioned by the publisher of the study, according to the Post. A small study in Brazil of a similar drug, chloroquine, was stopped because multiple test subjects developed irregular heart rates.
“The data are really just at best suggestive,” Fauci he said on CBS‘s “Face the Nation. “There have been cases that show there may be an effect, and there are others to show there’s no effect.”