Health officials in Nigeria have issued a worldwide warning after three people in the country overdosed on Chloroquine following President Donald Trump’s comments about using it to treat coronavirus, CNN reported Monday.
Health officials told the News Network that three people were hospitalized in the city after taking the drug. The officials later issued a statement cautioning against using chloroquine for Covid-19 treatment.
“Please note: Hospitals Now Receiving Patients Suffering From Chloroquine Poisoning,” an official tweeted, urging people against the consumption of Chloroquine as a measure to fight coronavirus.”
Please note: Hospitals Now Receiving Patients Suffering From Chloroquine Poisoning, Says Gov @jidesanwoolu‘s SSA on Health, Dr @Oreoluwa_Finnih
She urged people against massive consumption of Chloroquine as a measure to fight #coronavirus. pic.twitter.com/Q4vLS79KUs
— gboyega akosile (@gboyegaakosile) March 20, 2020
Trump claimed at a White House briefing last week that the Food and Drug Administration had approved the “very powerful” drug chloroquine to treat coronavirus.
“It’s shown very encouraging — very, very encouraging early results. And we’re going to be able to make that drug available almost immediately. And that’s where the FDA has been so great. They — they’ve gone through the approval process; it’s been approved. And they did it — they took it down from many, many months to immediate. So we’re going to be able to make that drug available by prescription or states,” Trump said.
He added: “Normally the FDA would take a long time to approve something like that, and it’s — it was approved very, very quickly and it’s now approved, by prescription.”
However, the FDA after the briefing issued a statement saying it had not approved the drug for use against Covid-19 and is still studying its effectiveness against the disease.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, the government’s top infectious disease expert, also contradicted Trump’s assertion about the drug.
“Many of the things out there are what I have called ‘anecdotal reports,'” he told reporters at a press briefing. “The information that you’re referring to specifically is anecdotal. It was not done in a controlled clinical trial, so you really can’t make any definitive statement about it.”
He reiterated those remarks on Saturday, the same day that Trump tweeted that “HYDROXYCHLOROQUINE & AZITHROMYCIN, taken together, have a real chance to be one of the biggest game changers in the history of medicine.”
“I’m not totally sure what the president was referring to,” Fauci said. “Many things you hear out there are what I call anecdotal reports. They may be true, but they’re anecdotal. It was not done in a controlled clinical trial, so you really can’t make any definitive statement about it.”