We can all agree on the importance of giving credit where credit is due.
Surprisingly, a Democratic Michigan state representative is crediting President Trump’s promotion of the anti-malarial drug, hydroxychloroquine, with saving her life.
Trump began mentioning the drug, among others, a few weeks ago as evidence from international studies showed the drug could be effective in treating COVID patients. While evidence that the drug successfully treats the disease remains relatively small at this point, a growing number of medical professionals are calling for the use of the drug in COVID treatment.
Fox News shares the details of the Michigan representative’s story:
A Democratic Michigan state lawmaker has credited President Trump’s publicizing of the anti-malarial drug hydroxychloroquine with saving her life after her health “plummeted” when she contracted coronavirus.
State Rep. Karen Whitsett of Detroit told “The Ingraham Angle” on Monday that if it wasn’t for Trump pushing the drug through the Food and Drug Administration’s approval process for off-label use and touting it repeatedly during his daily press briefings, she may not have made it through the terrible contagion.
“I really want to say that you have to give this an opportunity,” she said. “For me, it saved my life. I only can go by what it is that I have gone through and what my story is, and I can’t speak for anyone else. So that’s not what I’m trying to do here. I’m only speaking for myself.”
Whitsett said she went into home quarantine on March 12 — the she day she last attended a session at the State House in Lansing — and her health quickly deteriorated over the following week.
“It took the longest [time] for me to actually be able to get an appointment and getting with my doctor, which was the 18th of March, and then actually getting the COVID test,” she said, adding that at first, she thought she had only contracted a bout of pneumonia and was put on the popular antibiotic drug amoxicillin.
On March 31, Whitsett continued, she tested positive for coronavirus and her well-being “just plummeted.”
“It went from the headaches being severe to fluid building up in my lungs, to sweats breaking out to the cough and my breathing being labored,” she said. “It all happened in a matter of hours.”
When Whitsett did make it to the hospital, she found out about a state order prohibiting the use of hydroxychloroquine. The Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs, under Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, had issued the order, only for the governor to retract it several days later.
“I did have a difficult time, even that day, obtaining the medication because of an order that was put down in my state,” said Whitsett. “And it was on that day so you can imagine how terrified I was that I had to beg and plead and go through a whole lot to try to get the medication.”
Whitsett says that she has chronic Lyme disease and had heard of hydroxychloroquine but would not have thought of it as a potential coronavirus treatment if not for Trump’s briefings.
Several governors have put restrictions in place regarding using hydroxychloroquine in COVID patients. These restrictions, however, are facing increasing resistance. A growing body of evidence appears to point in the direction of the drug being an effective treatment for COVID.
Check out some of the latest tweets on hydroxychloroquine:
While some medical groups remain skeptical, some are endorsing the use of the drug in the fight against COVID.
The New York Post reports on one medical group's call to use the drug:
America’s major medical society specializing in the treatment of respiratory diseases has endorsed using hydroxychloroquine for seriously ill hospitalized coronavirus patients.
The American Thoracic Society issued guidelines Monday that suggest COVID-19 patients with pneumonia get doses of the anti-malaria drug.
“To prescribe hydroxychloroquine (or chloroquine) to hospitalized patients with COVID-19 pneumonia if all of the following apply: a) shared decision-making is possible, b) data can be collected for interim comparisons of patients who received hydroxychloroquine (or chloroquine) versus those who did not, c) the illness is sufficiently severe to warrant investigational therapy, and d) the drug is not in short supply,” the Thoracic Society said.
The use of hydroxychloroquine has been hotly debated.
President Trump has promoted its use on an experimental basis and Gov. Andrew Cuomo has agreed to provide it to thousands of seriously ill patients in New York hospitals in combination with Zithromax.
Critics have criticized the promotion of using the drug based on limited or anecdotal evidence.
The Thoracic Society said its guidelines are based on input from an international task force comprised of doctors from medical centers that are currently treating COVID-19 patients.
The medical group said evidence about the impact of hydroxychloroquine is “contradictory” but it is worth experimenting with during a public health crisis to treat very sick patients.
Just a few days ago, President Trump announced that the government had placed large orders for the drug. Check out his announcement below: