Trump's "doctor" rantings about the coronavirus

Donald Trump at a White House press conference on April 23.
Donald Trump at a White House press conference on April 23. MANDEL NGAN / AFP

It was not a scene from Doctor in spite of himself, but a Donald Trump press conference devoted to the coronavirus, Thursday, April 23. The President of the United States climbed the podium, visibly fascinated by the work presented by Bill Bryan, under secretary responsible for technology and science in the Department of Homeland Security.

Before allowing anyone to ask a question, the president embarked on a customary improvisation, offering to answer a "Question to which probably some of you (the journalists) think ".

"Suppose we expose the body with a huge ultraviolet or just very powerful lightsaid Trump, I think it has not been verified, but you will test it. " Researchers could also bring "The light inside the body", added Mr. Trump, "Either through the skin or in some other way". The World Health Organization has however warned against using UV lamps to sterilize any part of the body, saying it could cause skin irritation.

Bill Bryan also said that research has shown that bleach can kill the virus in saliva or respiratory fluids in five minutes and that isopropyl alcohol can kill it even faster. Trump has suggested there should be other tests done in this area as well. "The disinfectant removes it in a minute. One minute ! ", did he declare. "Is there a way to do something like this by injecting inside? ", evoking "Cleaning"knowing that the virus enters and makes it into the lungs "A lot of damage".

Dr. Deborah Birx, a member of the White House virus crisis unit, did not respond to the president's comments regarding light therapy or disinfectant injections.

"This idea of ​​injecting into the body or ingesting any type of cleaning product is irresponsible and dangerous", Doctor Vin Gupta, a public health expert specializing in lung and intensive care, told NBC. "It is a method commonly used by people who want to kill themselves", he continued.

Numerous doctors and scientists have also castigated Mr. Trump's comments on social media. "Please do not drink bleach or isopropyl alcohol to remove # COVID19 from your saliva", tweeted Dara Kass, Associate Professor of Emergency Medicine at Columbia University Medical Center.

"Likewise, fire immolation could be a useful alternative"quipped the French research center Marseille Immunopôle, stressing that the methods suggested by the American president "Were killing the virus and the patients!" ".

Weak links

Moments before, Bill Bryan explained: “We have identified some of the weak links in the virus's transmission chain. We have identified that heat and humidity are weak elements in this chain. We identified that sunlight, UV rays were a weakness in this chain. "

In support of his claims, the expert presented some figures from this study conducted by the National Center for Analysis and Countermeasures in the field of biodefense. Bill Bryan concluded that summer conditions could create "An environment in which transmission can be reduced". But that does not mean that the pathogen is completely eliminated. And the results of this one study cannot justify lifting social distancing measures currently in effect in the United States, he warned.

It also does not matter if the coronavirus has proved to be deadly in places like Singapore when the temperatures were summer, which calls into question a link between the behavior of the virus and environmental factors.

Nearly 50,000 dead

Sixteen US states are establishing plans to resume economic activity and ease containment measures to stem the spread of the coronavirus. Georgia and South Carolina allow certain businesses to reopen this weekend.

The pandemic killed 49,759 people in the United States, one of the worst human records in twenty-four hours, according to figures from Johns Hopkins University on Thursday evening. Between Wednesday evening and Thursday evening, 3,176 new deaths linked to Covid-19 were recorded in the country, according to official figures. During this twenty-four hour period, 26,971 new cases of coronavirus were identified, for a total of 866,646 cases identified, according to the count of Johns Hopkins University. Due to the lack of tests, the actual number of people infected is probably very much higher.

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The World with AFP, AP and Reuters


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