“It would be a medical mistake not to give chloroquine against the Chinese virus”, according to Professor Didier Raoult

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Professor Didier Raoult in his office in February 2020 – Gérard Julien / AFP

  • Chinese scientists say in a publication that treatment for malaria can cure coronavirus.
  • Based on this study, teams from the Mediterranean Infection Institute in Marseille are now planning to use chloroquine to treat the disease.
  • For its director, Didier Raoult, the reservations expressed by certain colleagues are irrelevant.

A small tablet, known for decades, to treat an as yet unknown epidemic. According to several Chinese scientists, chloroquine, a widely available and inexpensive molecule commonly used to treat malaria, is an effective remedy to cure one of the diseases that cause the most fear today:
coronaviruses.

In Marseille, the Mediterranean Infection Institute (IHU), a unique reference center in France for the treatment of infectious diseases including Covid-19, has therefore decided to order a stock of chloroquine, with a view to treating ‘possible future Chinese coronavirus patients.
“Coronavirus: Endgame! “Headlines the IHU on its website in an article on the benefits of chloroquine. Professor Didier Raoult, director of the IHU and somewhat annoyed by the reservations, criticisms and other comments raised by this decision, explains to 20 minutes this choice.

Can you explain what chloroquine is?

It is a very old medicine. It is probably the most widely used drug with aspirin in human history. Young people do not know it because they did not know it as an antimalarial. People who lived in Africa like me took chloroquine every day. All the people who went to these hot countries took it during their whole stay, and every day for the two months after their return. There are billions of people who have taken this drug. And it costs nothing: ten cents per tablet. It is a drug that is extremely safe and the cheapest that you can imagine. So this is great news! Everyone who knows about these benefits should take it upon themselves.

Some scientists are less enthusiastic than you about the benefits of chloroquine against the coronavirus, like Professor Astrid Vabret in “Sciences and Future” …

Everyone’s gossip, I don’t care. It does not interest me. My job has been infectious diseases for forty years. I feel compelled, because I believe that it is now necessary, to communicate what I know, and not opinions, on research in infectious disease. After what you do with it, I’m not a prophet. I do not care. I’m trying to be as clear as possible. When we showed that a drug worked on a hundred people while everyone is having a nervous breakdown, and that there are noodles who say that we are not sure that it works , it does not interest me !

Are you going to use chloroquine at the IHU to treat coronavirus?

Chinese scientists are very serious people. They are not zozos, and they have shown that chloroquine works. It would honestly be a medical mistake not to give chloroquine to the Chinese coronavirus. It does not make sense. Be serious. Tomorrow you start to be short of breath. You have a Chinese coronavirus and you have 40 fever. And people tell you, “You know, I don’t believe in chloroquine against Chinese coronavirus.” What are you doing ?

At the IHU, we are going to set up a therapeutic protocol. We want to take care of the sick. There are people who come in with a serious illness, and it has been shown that the only treatment for this illness is chloroquine. So, to not give chloroquine, you have to be stuffed! So we are going to warn the minister to tell him that if the people who arrive have a Chinese coronavirus, we will treat them with chloroquine because it is the only treatment that we have been shown to work. That’s all ! It’s not mysterious, it’s medicine, not television gossip!



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