US President Donald Trump has reportedly asked for hydroxychloroquine while receiving treatment for COVID-19 at the Walter Reed Army Medical Centre.
Trump and his wife, Melania, tested positive for COVID-19 on Thursday night after Hope Hicks, a White House aide, contracted the virus.
The president was transferred from the White House to the US army hospital in Bethesda where he is receiving treatment.
Addressing reporters on Saturday, Sean Conley, Trump’s physician, said the president was moved out of the hospital out of caution.
“Just 72 hours into the diagnosis now, the first week of COVID – in particular, days seven to 10 – are the most critical in determining the likely course of this illness,” he said.
Sean Dooley, a pulmonologist who also spoke during the briefing, said Trump is in good spirits.
He said the doctors are monitoring closely for symptoms of complications.
“We are monitoring very closely for any evidence of complications from either the coronavirus illness or the therapies that we are prescribing to make him better. He is in exceptionally good spirits,” he said.
The doctors said Trump asked about hydroxychloroquine, but he is not taking it at this time.
Trump announced in May that he had been taking hydroxychloroquine daily as a preventive measure against COVID-19.
Chloroquine is an oral artemisinin-based monotherapy (oAMT) for the treatment of malaria.
He earlier claimed in March that the drug had been approved to treat COVID-19 and gone through the approval process — a statement contrary to that of Stephen Hahn, the commissioner for Food and Drug Administration who maintained that chloroquine for treating COVID-19 would still need to go through clinical trials.
Trump said the drug could be a “game changer” in the quest to rid the world of the virus.
“Hydroxychloroquine & Azithromycin, taken together, have a real chance to be one of the biggest game changers in the history of medicine,” he had said.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) stopped its trial on the use of chloroquine to treat COVID-19 patients after evidence showed it does not reduce the mortality rate.
On Saturday evening, Trump also took to his Twitter account and commended medical personnel for their care.
The president said he is feeling well, adding that tremendous progress has been recorded in the fight against COVID-19.
“Doctors, Nurses and ALL at the GREAT Walter Reed Medical Center, and others from likewise incredible institutions who have joined them, are AMAZING!!!Tremendous progress has been made over the last 6 months in fighting this PLAGUE. With their help, I am feeling well!” the tweet read.
Doctors, Nurses and ALL at the GREAT Walter Reed Medical Center, and others from likewise incredible institutions who have joined them, are AMAZING!!!Tremendous progress has been made over the last 6 months in fighting this PLAGUE. With their help, I am feeling well!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 3, 2020
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