President Donald Trump said he has completed his two-week course of anti-malaria drug hydroxychloroquine, after announcing earlier this month that he had begun taking it following consultations with the White House physician.
In an interview with Full Measure with Sharyl Attkisson on May 23, the president said that he just finished taking the drug, which he has often touted as a “game changer” treatment for the virus, despite warnings from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and a number of medical professionals about its effectiveness and potentially dangerous side effects.
“Finished, just finished,” Trump said of his two-week program. “And by the way, I’m still here. To the best of my knowledge, here I am.”
Trump has repeatedly tested negative for the virus.
When asked if he was sending “mixed messages” to the American people by taking the drug after scientists and White House officials warned against taking it, Trump defended his actions, saying he had heard “tremendous reports about it.”
“Many people think it saved their lives,” he said. “Doctors come out with reports. You had a study in France, you had a study in Italy that were incredible studies. Look, if somebody else were promoting it other than me—call it a promotion because I want people to get better. I don’t get anything. I don’t gain anything other than if it’s something that helps, that’s a good thing. That’s what I want. That’s all I want. I believe in it enough that I took a program because I had two people in the White House that tested positive. I figured maybe it’s a good thing to take a program. You know, we take a little bit of—a period of time, I think it was two weeks. But hydroxy has had tremendous, if you look at it, tremendous, rave reviews.”
The FDA has cautioned against the use of hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine, a related drug, for COVID-19 treatment outside of hospitals or clinical trials due to the risk of life-threatening heart problems. However, there are currently a number of trials taking place in various countries studying the effectiveness of the drug in treating the virus.
Watch the full interview here:
Correction: A previous version of this article incorrectly stated why President Trump took hydroxychloroquine. The Epoch Times regrets the error.