‘I think this is the beginning of the end of the pandemic. I’m very serious…’
(Joshua Paladino, Liberty Headlines) An infectious disease specialist joined Fox News‘ “The Ingraham Angle” Wednesday night to share an optimistic opinion about hydroxychloroquine, an anti-malarial drug that has been effective in treating COVID-19.
Dr. Stephen Smith, founder of The Smith Center for Infectious Diseases and Urban Health, said hydroxychloroquine in combination with azithromycin, a common antibiotic, is a “game-changer,” echoing prior statements made by President Donald Trump.
HYDROXYCHLOROQUINE & AZITHROMYCIN, taken together, have a real chance to be one of the biggest game changers in the history of medicine. The FDA has moved mountains – Thank You! Hopefully they will BOTH (H works better with A, International Journal of Antimicrobial Agents)…..
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 21, 2020
Leftists have vigorously sought to dismiss the possibility of an effective, market-ready treatment as the coronavirus pandemic wreaks havoc on the US economy and calls into question Trump’s once-easy path to re-election.
In one particularly egregious smear effort, a left-wing couple poisoned themselves by ingesting fish-tank cleaner, claiming to media outlets and authorities that Trump had convinced them to do it. The husband died as a result.
Smith, however, countered the narrative, telling Fox News host Laura Ingraham that the drug combination’s proper use in a clinical setting had yielded undeniably positive results.
“I think this is the beginning of the end of the pandemic. I’m very serious,” he said.
Dr. Mehmet Oz confirmed Smith’s analysis.
“In terms of symptoms, their temperatures—their fevers broke instead of three days, which is the norm over there on this treatment, they got two days,” Oz said Thursday on “Fox and Friends.” “We think it’s real.”
Smith said he has 72 patients with COVID-19, and he is treating “everybody with hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin. We’ve been doing so for a while.”
He said none of his patients who received hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin for at least five days had required intubation, or using a tracheal tube connected to a ventilator for respiratory support.
“The chance of that occurring by chance—according to my sons, Leon and Hunter, who did some stats for me—are .000-something,” Smith said. “It’s ridiculously low.”
Political leaders, hospitals, and doctors have been requesting more ventilators because COVID-19 causes acute respiratory distress and eventual failure as fluid builds in the lungs and prevents the flow of oxygen throughout the body.
Hydroxychloroquine—which has long been prescribed for malaria and was considered, but ultimately rejected, as an Ebola treatment—is currently undergoing clinical trials to gauge its efficacy in treating COVID-19.
Based on widespread anecdotal evidence, though, the Food and Drug Administration already has issued an emergency authorization for the drug’s use.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, one of the leading disease experts on Trump’s Coronavirus Task Force, urged caution in placing too much faith in it, although he acknowledged that he agreed with Trump in “substance” regarding its life-saving potential.
The president, however, said he saw little downside in casting a hopeful glance at it.
“It’s not a drug that you have a huge amount of danger with,” he said during a March press briefing. “It’s not a drug that may have an unbelievable effect, like kill you … I sure as hell think we oughta give it a try.”
Liberty Headlines’ Ben Sellers contributed to this report.