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CIA Privately Warns Employees of ‘Sudden Cardiac Death’ From Trump’s Favorite Untested Coronavirus Drug

GERARD JULIEN/AFP via Getty Images

A private CIA website warned employees about the potential dangers of hydroxychloroquine — the untested coronavirus treatment that President Donald Trump has spent weeks promoting — including the potential for “sudden cardiac death.”

The Washington Post reports that a private website featured a sobering warning after a CIA employee asked if the drug should be taken without a prescription:

A CIA website for employees with questions about the coronavirus addressed the topic on March 27, noting there had been media reports suggesting the drug “has activity against the COVID-19 virus.”

“At this point, the drug is not recommended to be used by patients except by medical professionals prescribing it as part of ongoing investigational studies. There are potentially significant side effects, including sudden cardiac death, associated with hydroxychloroquine and its individual use in patients need to be carefully selected and monitored by a health care professional,” the answer said, before adding in bold type: “Please do not obtain this medication on your own.”

Trump began promoting the drug at a White House Coronavirus Task Force Briefing on March 19, and has repeatedly and enthusiastically continued to do so despite experts — including task force infectious disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci — urging caution, and despite a lack of scientific evidence to support the effectiveness of the drug against the Covid-19 disease.

Demand for the drug has caused doctors and other prescribers to hoard it for themselves, making it difficult for patients who need it for proven indications to obtain the treatments they need.

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