A poll of 6,200 physicians in 30 countries found the malaria drug touted by the White House, hydroxychloroquine, is the best drug available to treat COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.
The World Health Organization claims that “there is no evidence” that any medicine “can prevent or cure the disease.” But physicians who have used a combination of hydroxychloroquine and the antibiotic azithromycin have claimed exceptional results.
Calling it an “absolute game changer,” renowned infectious disease specialist Dr. Stephen Smith said Wednesday he has seen 100% success in his treatment of 72 seriously ill COVID-19 patients with hydroxchloroquine and azithromycin.
“I think this is the beginning of the end of the pandemic,” he said in an interview with Fox News host Laura Ingraham. “I’m very serious.”
“It’s a game-changer. An absolute game-changer.”
The poll, conducted by Sermo, a private social media network for physicians, found 72% of doctors in Spain had prescribed hydroxychloroquine for COVID-19, DailyMail.com reported.
Spain is suffering the second worst coronavirus outbreak in Europe, next to Italy, where the survey found 53% of doctors had prescribed hydroxychloroquine for COVID-19.
The poll found 44% of doctors in China had prescribed it.
Sermo chief executive Peter Kirk, DailyMail.com reported, described the polling results as a “treasure trove of global insights for policymakers.”
“Physicians should have more of a voice in how we deal with this pandemic and be able to quickly share information with one another and the world,” he said.
In the United States, the FDA on Monday authorized “emergency use” of hydroxychloroquine to treat COVID-19 patients in hospitals and in clinical trials.
One week ago, the governments of Italy and France approved the use of hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin as a last resort based on a limited study by Dr. Didier Raoult, a professor of infectious diseases in Marseille. In the U.K., doctors have been instructed not to use it for COVID-19, although it has treated autoimmune diseases such as lupus and rheumatoid arthritis since the 1940s. However, clinical trials are underway.
See Dr. Stephen Smith’s interview with Laura Ingraham:
As WND reported March 25 a physician who works in New York City hospitals has found nearly 100% success treating COVID-19 patients with a combination of hydroxychloroquine, azithromycin and zinc sulfate.
Clinical trials underway
On Monday, the Department of Health and Human Services said in a statement announcing the FDA’s limited approval that it had received 30 million doses of hydroxychloroquine sulfate donated by Sandoz and 1 million doses of chloroquine phosphate donated by Bayer Pharmaceuticals for the national stockpile of pharmaceuticals and medical supplies.
The agency said both drugs “have shown activity in laboratory studies against coronaviruses, including SARS-CoV-2 (the virus that causes COVID-19).”
“Anecdotal reports suggest that these drugs may offer some benefit in the treatment of hospitalized COVID-19 patients,” the HHS statement said. “Clinical trials are needed to provide scientific evidence that these treatments are effective.”
Crediting President Trump for his “bold leadership,” Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar said the federal government will “continue working around the clock to get American patients access to therapeutics that may help them battle COVID-19, while building the evidence to evaluate which options are effective.”
Democratic governors in Michigan and Nevada have restricted prescriptions of the two drugs. They claimed the drugs were being hoarded, prompting allegations Democrats are attempting to discredit medications promoted by the president.
Dr. Luciana Borio, who served as FDA acting chief scientist under President Obama, criticized the agency’s emergency-use order.
On Twitter, she insisted there’s a “total lack of scientific evidence that chloroquine/hydroxychloroquine are beneficial in the treatment of COVID-19.”