US health official transferred after he “resisted efforts to provide an unproven drug on demand”

NBC: Top health official says he was ousted for pushing back on Trump’s ‘game changer’ drug

“I believe this transfer was in response to my insistence that the government invest the billions of dollars allocated by Congress to address the COVID-19 pandemic into safe and scientifically vetted solutions, and not in drugs, vaccines and other technologies that lack scientific merit. I am speaking out because to combat this deadly virus, science — not politics or cronyism — has to lead the way,” Dr. Rick Bright said Wednesday in a statement issued by his lawyers.

“Specifically, and contrary to misguided directives, I limited the broad use of chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine, promoted by the Administration as a panacea, but which clearly lack scientific merit. While I am prepared to look at all options and to think ‘outside the box’ for effective treatments, I rightly resisted efforts to provide an unproven drug on demand to the American public,” Bright said in the statement, which was first reported by The New York Times.

Bright was deputy assistant secretary of health and human services for preparedness and response and director of the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, or BARDA, until earlier this week, when, he says, he was “involuntarily transferred to a more limited and less impactful position at the National Institutes of Health.”

Asked about Bright’s transfer at the White House coronavirus briefing Wednesday night, Trump said, “I never heard of him.”

That’s typical denial from Trump.

NPS: NIH Panel Recommends Against Drug Combination Promoted By Trump For COVID-19

A panel of experts convened by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases recommends against doctors using a combination of hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin for the treatment of COVID-19 patients because of potential toxicities.

“The combination of hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin was associated with QTc prolongation in patients with COVID-19,” the panel said.

QTc prolongation increases the risk of sudden cardiac death.

On April 5, though, without any more evidence of efficacy, he went further:

“What do you have to lose? And a lot of people are saying that when — and are taking it — if you’re a doctor, a nurse, a first responder, a medical person going into hospitals, they say taking it before the fact is good.  But what do you have to lose?  They say, ‘Take it.’ I’m not looking at it one way or the other, but we want to get out of this.  If it does work, it would be a shame if we didn’t do it early. But we have some very good signs. So that’s hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin.”

As for using the use of hydroxychloroquine or chloroquine alone, the panel said there was “insufficient clinical data to recommend either for or against.” It reached the same conclusion about the drug remdesivir.

“It’s all based on the data,” said panel member Dr. Susan Swindells, a professor in the department of internal medicine at the University of Nebraska College of Medine.

The gut feeling of a president may be right sometimes but it can easily be wrong, and with potentially many lives at risk shooting of recommendations by Twitter are downright dangerous.

Leave a comment


  1. Conspiratoor

     /  23rd April 2020

    Yes, hydroxychloroquine probably did play a role in this, but if I was an impartial observer and refused to blindly follow the narrative I might have done some research on this rooster and discovered that he had plenty of other internal issues dogging him as well

    • Duker

       /  23rd April 2020

      Ahhh of course was Obamas fault and egged on Hilary Clinton and her Ukrainian masters

  2. duperez

     /  23rd April 2020

    Of course the gut feeling of a president may be right. If you were going to fly somewhere in a plane and there was something wrong with an engine would you rely on Trump’s gut feeling on how to fix it because he might be right?

    Or his gut feeling about what someone should do in performing brain surgery on your child?

    It’s like saying, “I prayed to God last night and she told me….” and when things don’t go as hoped saying it’s God’s will.

    He’s a property developer cum politician! Because he’s the president doesn’t mean his gut is any more or less erudite or sage than that of any other property developer.

  3. Alan Wilkinson

     /  23rd April 2020

    NIH Panel:
    Finally, it is important to stress that the rated treatment recommendations in these Guidelines should not be considered mandates. The choice of what to do or not to do for an individual patient is ultimately decided by the patient together with their provider.

    As I said. And:

    IkThere are insufficient clinical data to recommend either for or against using chloroquine or hydroxychloroquine for the treatment of COVID-19 (AIII).
    If chloroquine or hydroxychloroquine is used, clinicians should monitor the patient for adverse effects, especially prolonged QTc interval (AIII).

    So the “Trump drug” was not recommended against at all. Only in combination with a specific antibiotic was it recommended against.

  4. Another clash between Trump and a top official and more mixed messages:

    In another bizarre twist, Trump produced Robert Redfield, director of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, to walk back his remarks that the coronavirus challenge could be more difficult in the fall.

    Trump claimed that Redfield had been “totally misquoted” by the media. But under questioning from reporters, Redfield confirmed that he had in fact made the remarks that angered Trump.

    “I’m accurately quoted in The Washington Post,” he conceded, as Trump countered that the headline was wrong. It accurately described Redfield warning that if a coronavirus resurgence came at the same time as the flu season, hospitals could be overwhelmed.

    The President also openly clashed with his top public health officials on the likelihood of the virus returning for another assault in the fall — saying only “embers” of disease were likely that could be easily put out.

    The President did break with Georgia’s Republican Gov. Brian Kemp, saying he “strongly disagrees” with aggressive plans to open businesses including hair salons on Friday as pro-Trump southern states look to ease stay-at-home orders.

    But his rebuke followed days of Trump all but goading southern conservative states to open up, even though many don’t yet meet White House opening guidelines. And a source familiar with calls between Trump and Vice President Mike Pence and the Georgia governor said that both men expressed support and praise for Kemp’s move to reopen businesses.


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