President Donald Trump suggested in a video statement that a drug could be available for free to people facing COVID-19.
He said he would work to ensure the combination of drugs he was administered at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center – including a high dose of an experimental antibody cocktail from Regeneron – would be made available at no cost to other Americans.
He made the remarks in a nearly 5-minute video statement Wednesday. He suggested he wanted the drugs approved and to get them to hospitals to people, adding “that’s much more important to me than the vaccine.”
“I want everybody to be given the same treatment as your president,” Trump said. “I think this was a blessing from God that I got it. It was a blessing in disguise.”
Trump’s doctors asked for the Regeneron drug, which Trump praised Wednesday, under “compassionate use” rules, which allow a patient with a life-threatening disease to get an experimental medicine if they can’t enroll in a study testing it and there’s no good alternative.
Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Inc. revealed on Tuesday how rare it was for anyone to get the drug it gave Trump outside of studies testing its safety and effectiveness. The drug, which supplies antibodies to help the immune system clear the coronavirus, is widely viewed as very promising.
Trump also received the antiviral remdesivir and the steroid dexamethasone, and it’s impossible to know whether any of these drugs did him any good.
These drugs are unproven for mild illness and have not been tested in combination.
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