U.S. President Donald Trump, in a surprise announcement, said on Monday he is taking hydroxychloroquine as a preventive medicine against the coronavirus despite medical warnings about the use of the malaria drug.
Trump volunteered the disclosure during a question-and-answer session with reporters at the White House as he met restaurant executives whose businesses are reeling from the impact of the virus.
“I’m taking hydroxychloroquine,” Trump said. “I’ve been taking it for the last week and a half. A pill every day.”
Weeks ago, Trump had promoted the drug as a potential treatment based on a positive report about its use against the virus, but subsequent studies found that it was not helpful. The Food and Drug Administration has issued a warning about its use.
In an April 24 statement, the FDA said it was “aware of reports of serious heart rhythm problems” in patients with COVID-19 treated with hydroxychloroquine or an older drug, chloroquine.