by Jon Guze
Senior Fellow, Legal Studies, John Locke Foundation
So says Prof. Nick White, one of the scientists involved in a large-scale hydroxychloroquine trial organized by England’s Oxford University. A recent BBC article describes how politically motivated opposition and online misinformation has put the trial in jeopardy:
A trial investigating the drug hydroxychloroquine as a preventative treatment against Covid-19 may never find out if it’s effective, say scientists involved.
Controversy around the drug … is stopping completion of the trial, they say. …
The Oxford University-led trial is aiming to enrol 40,000 frontline workers around the world.
Investigators hope the large-scale, double-blind randomised study will show if early use of the treatment prevents the virus from getting worse. …
The UK medicines regulatory body MHRA halted hydroxychloroquine trials, following a now-discredited paper in The Lancet claiming it caused harms.
Trials resumed in late June but the investigators says these concerns over safety, and the drug’s politicisation, have made it difficult to get participants. …
There have yet to be results from large-scale studies on the drug’s effectiveness as a prophylactic.
Healthcare workers have been disproportionately affected by Covid-19, and the Oxford scientists leading the trial hope the drug may help those on the frontline of the pandemic.
In a previous post I noted that, “Nowadays everything to do with COVID-19, and everything to do with everything else for that matter, gets filtered through the lens of tribal commitment. If this trend continues, it won’t end well!” Sadly, this BBC report suggests that the trend is, indeed, continuing.