Donald Trump has pushed hydroxychloroquine as a potential coronavirus treatment so hard that he actually got the Centers for Disease Control to modify its website with anecdotes about the drug and COVID-19. One government agency that isn’t going along with Trump’s push for an unproven treatment in which he has a financial stake, though, is the CIA.
A CIA website for the agency’s own employees added a strong warning against hydroxychloroquine—including a warning about “sudden cardiac death”—about a week after Trump said of the drug that “I think it could be, based on what I see, it could be a game changer.”
“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 and its individual use in patients need to be carefully selected and monitored by a health care professional,” the CIA website warns. Then, in bold type: “Please do not obtain this medication on your own.”
”What do you have to lose?” Trump asked, as he promoted hydroxychloroquine despite a lack of evidence that it works. Well, “sudden cardiac death” means there’s something to lose.