90 Miles From Tyranny : Money and Politics Behind Anti-Hydroxychloroquine Bias, New Report Suggests

Monday, May 18, 2020

Money and Politics Behind Anti-Hydroxychloroquine Bias, New Report Suggests

Remdesivir, an antiviral medication that was developed by the biopharmaceutical company Gilead Sciences, has been widely touted as the most promising drug to treat COVID-19, even though—so far—the new and expensive drug does not seem to be terribly effective at fighting the disease.

The anti-malaria drug hydroxychloroquine, on the other hand, is cheap, has been used safely for decades, and has shown great promise as a weapon in the fight against the coronavirus—yet after President Trump mentioned it as a promising potential treatment for the disease, the media immediately blasted him for touting an “unproven” and potentially unsafe drug.

As Full Measure reported Sunday night, the two camps have divided along political lines, with conservatives siding with hydroxychloroquine and the left-leaning media backing remdesivir.

The FDA seems to have taken a side too, green-lighting emergency use of remdesivir for severely ill coronavirus patients, while warning that chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine should only be taken in the hospital or as part of a formal study due to reports of “serious heart rhythm problems.”

Investigative reporter Sharyl Attkisson spoke with a doctor and several scientists who told her that the anti-hydroxychloroquine bias in the media has been “unwarranted,” “harmful,” and has even “cost lives.”

Attkisson also “followed the money” to find out why the two drugs are being treated so differently. Not surprisingly, she found that many of the people promoting remdesivir have major conflicts of interest.

She first spoke with cardiologist Dr. William O’Neill, a medical director at the Henry Ford Health System in Detroit, Michigan, where both remdesivir and hydroxychloroquine are being studied.

O’Neill told Attkisson that the media’s attempts to “disprove and discredit” hydroxychloroquine has been “very harmful.”

“I think those of us that are actually involved in the scientific endeavor feel that there is some value to it and it has to be tested,” he said.

Joining many other doctors who have gone on the record to praise hydroxychloroquine as a promising treatment for coronavirus, O’Neill said that he’s seen improvement in every coronavirus patient to whom he has...

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