#Hydroxychloroquine saga: Professor says it CURES Covid-19

Debate continues to rage over the efficacy of hydroxychloroquine as cure for Covid-19.

The World Health Organisation initially recommended the drug, but later withdrew the recommendation. This followed some scientific studies that discredited the drug and also pointed out some fatal side effects.

Cameroonian-born Dr Stella Immanuel on Monday in Washington D.C. brought the drug back into public arena, claiming she had used it, along with Zinc and Azithromycyin, to great effect, to treat 350 Covid-19 patients.

Anthony Fauci, a member of the White House coronavirus task force and the nation’s top infectious disease expert, again stated, in light of the Immanuel video, that the drug is not effective in treating Covid-19.

Fauci told MSNBC host Andrea Mitchell on Wednesday that scientific evidence has shown “consistently that hydroxychloroquine is not effective in the treatment of coronavirus disease, or Covid-19.”

But days before Immanuel’s impassioned speech in Washington, Harvey A. Risch, Professor of Epidemiology, Yale School of Public Health in a now viral Newsweek article, published 23 July, canvassed for the use of the drug to treat Covid-19.

“The key to defeating Covid-19 already exists. We need to start using it”, said the title of the article.

But he warns that the drug is effective when used early on afflicted patients.

Yale University has not denounced his position. 

On Wednesday, Sten H. Vermund, Dean and Anna M.R. Lauder Professor of Public Health; Professor of Pediatrics, Yale School of Medicine said Risch position falls within the realm of academic freedom.

Vermund in the press release said: As Dean of the Yale School of Public Health where Dr. Risch is employed, I have championed maintaining open academic discourse, including what some may view as unpopular voices.

“The tradition of academia is that faculty may do research, interpret their work, and disseminate their findings. If persons disagree with Dr. Risch’s review of the literature, it would be advisable to disseminate the alternative scientific interpretations, perhaps through letters or other publications with alternative viewpoints to the American Journal of Epidemiology, Newsweek, or other outlets.

“My role as Dean is not to suppress the work of the faculty, but rather, to support the academic freedom of our faculty, whether it is in the mainstream of thinking or is contrarian”.

Vermund further attested to Risch’s scholarly pedigree and the fact that the controversial drug was applied in the early days of Covid-19 in America.

“Dr. Harvey Risch is a distinguished cancer epidemiologist who has opined on the topic of hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) and COVID-19 out-patient therapy.

“He has written a review article in the American Journal of Epidemiology that cites evidence that he believes supports HCQ use for out-patient infection with SARS-CoV-2.

“Studies that indicate no effect or harmful effects, Dr. Risch believes, enrolled patients too sick to benefit from HCQ.

“Yale-affiliated physicians used HCQ early in the response to COVID-19, but it is only used rarely at present due to evidence that it is ineffective and potentially risky,” Vermund said.

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