Posts Tagged ‘medicine’

Trump’s Golf Buddy Owns the ‘Miracle Drug’ Company He Touts

October 9, 2020

Video by The Lincoln Project.

After returning from Walter Reed’s deluxe Presidential Suite to another exclusive, publicly-funded clinic at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, Donald Trump hyped an experimental antibody cocktail he’s on. It’s called REGN-COV2, but he thinks it’s called Regeneron, since that’s the name of the firm that makes it. Regeneron’s CEO, Dr. Leonard Schleifer, is Mr. Trump’s golf buddy and Westchester neighbor.

In a remarkable coincidence, Regeneron was awarded a $450 million contract to manufacture and supply a few thousand doses of the antibody treatment as part of “Operation Warp Speed,” the federal government’s Covid-19 vaccine program. REGN-COV2 is not a vaccine, it’s a monoclonal antibody cocktail. REGN-COV2 is still in trials, and has not been approved for use by the FDA. Even if the the drug cocktail is proven effect in treating or preventing COVID-19, there is no way a monoclonal antibody drug could be produced in sufficient quantities to be broadly available to America, let alone the world, meaning it might just go to the rich and powerful. Even though Trump didn’t pay for his antibody treatments, don’t think you’ll get them for free.

After the president’s White House infomercial, Regeneron’s stock price is surging.

More:

“Trump pushes FDA to quickly clear coronavirus antibody treatments, erroneously calling them a ‘cure,’” Carolyn Y. Johnson, Laurie McGinley and Josh Dawsey, Washington Post

“Trump is promising free antibody treatments for everyone. It won’t be that simple.” Zachary Brennan, Politico

“Regeneron execs go on a whirlwind media tour after Trump takes COVID-19 antibody cocktail,” Beth Snyder Bulik, Fierce Pharma

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CDC Funds First Gun Violence Research in 24 Years

October 7, 2020

CDC Funds First Gun Violence Study in Decades

In 2019, there were over 39,000 gun deaths in the US, including 24,000 suicides and 400 mass shootings. That’s a health crisis, but a craven Congress blocked medical research into gun violence. Until now:

“Last week, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced the recipients of nearly $8 million in funding to 16 research groups across the US to study firearm injury prevention. Their objectives over the next few years are to find ways to enhance safety and lower gun deaths and crime, either by evaluating current strategies in practice or proposing new ones. Research grants on the same topic awarded by the US National Institutes of Health are still under consideration.”

— “Researchers begin the first wave of US-funded gun injury prevention work in decades,” Katherine Ellen Foley, Quartz

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Study: Hydroxychloroquine didn’t protect health care workers

October 1, 2020

Study: Hydroxychloroquine didn't protect health care workers

President Donald Trump’s favorite COVID-19 preventing snake oil, Hydroxychloroquine, has been shown to be ineffective against the novel coronavirus in yet another medical study, this one involving health care workers.

More:

“Trump-touted hydroxychloroquine shows no benefit in COVID-19 prevention: study,” Reuters

“Hydroxychloroquine didn’t prevent Covid-19 among health care workers in new study,” Jacqueline Howard, CNN

“No Evidence That Hydroxychloroquine Can Prevent Covid-19, Concludes New Study,” Ed Cara, Gizmodo

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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Trump Self-Prescribes Snake Oil

May 19, 2020

Trump Self-Prescribes Snake Oil
President Donald Trump, dissuaded from mainlining Lysol, has talked his doctor into giving him hydroxychloroquine in an effort to prevent COVID-19. “The hydroxy,” as the president calls it, is an anti-malarial drug with zero proven effect in preventing or treating COVID-19 infection, and the FDA has warned of its cardiovascular risks. As of this writing, we are unaware of any movement to revoke the medical license of Sean Conley, D.O., current Physician to the President, over this matter.

President Trump’s reasons for ignoring prevailing advice on the risks in taking hydroxychloroquine?

  1. “You’d be surprised at how many people are taking it….”
  2. “I’ve heard a lot of good stories.”
  3. “I get a lot of positive calls about it.”
  4. “What the hell have you got to lose?”

More:

“Despite FDA Caution, Trump Says He Is Taking Hydroxychloroquine As A Preventive,” Joe Palca, NPR News

“Trump’s stunning claim that he’s taking hydroxychloroquine could trigger a cascade of negative effects,’ Philip Bump, Washington Post

“Trump Takes Hydroxychloroquine, Does Not Understand How Science Works,” Jonathan Chait, New York Magazine

“Trump Says He’s Taking Hydroxychloroquine, But He Also Lies Daily,” Peter Wade, Rolling Stone

Updates:

“Pence says he isn’t taking unproven hydroxychloroquine treatment for coronavirus that Trump takes,” Kevin Breuninger, CNBC

“Trump dismisses hydroxychloroquine study that undermines him as a ‘Trump enemy statement,’” aaron Rupar, Vox

“White House releases doctor’s note on Trump’s purported use of hydroxychloroquine,” Peter Weber, The Week 

“Hydroxychloroquine Isn’t a Joke It’s a Scandal,” Josh Marshall, Talking Points Memo

“Antimalarial drug touted by President Trump is linked to increased risk of death in coronavirus patients, study says,” Ariana Eunjung Cha and Laurie McGinley, Washington Post

“Hydroxychloroquine: Trump’s Covid-19 ‘cure’ increases deaths, global study finds,” Sarah Boseley, The Guardian

 

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

Trump Coronavirus Response: Tax Cuts

March 2, 2020

Trump Coronavirus Response: Tax Cuts

President Donald Trump has been laser-focused on the deadly Coronavirus epidemic, especially one frightening symptom, the biggest stock market dive since the 2008 financial crisis. This is big trouble for Mr. Trump, who has been taking credit for rising stock prices for the past three years. After putting public health expert Mike Pence in charge of the nation’s Coronavirus response, Mr. Trump prescribed his no-fail remedy for Wall Street’s ills: tax cuts. They’ll even pay for themselves! Too bad they won’t treat disease or pay for America’s health care.

More:

“Trump officials discuss tax cuts, other emergency measures in hopes of tackling coronavirus fallout,” Jeff Stein and Ashley Parker,” Washington Post

“Coronavirus Shows the Problem With Trump’s Stock Market Boasting,” Neil Irwin, New York Times

“The coronavirus gores Trump’s bull market,” Robert J. Samuelson, Washington Post

“Trump tries to shift blame as virus outbreak rattles markets,” Jonathan Lemire and Josh Boak, Associated Press

“Only Doctors Can Save the Markets From the Coronavirus,” Binyamin Appelbaum, New York Times

Update:

“Dow plunges despite Fed’s emergency rate cut to stem coronavirus panic,” Rachel Siegel and Thomas Heath, Washington Post

Related:

“Stock markets are headed for a 40 percent plunge, says economist who predicted financial crisis,” Summer Meza, The Week

“Global stock markets have lost $6 trillion in value in six days,” Maggie Fitzgerald, CNBC

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Mike Pence, Coronavirus Czar

February 28, 2020

Mike Pence, Coronavirus Czar

President Trump has named Vice President Mike Pence to lead his administration’s fight against the Coronavirus epidemic. Mr. Pence gained extensive medical experience during his stint as Indiana governor, when his Medicaid “expansion” cut health coverage for thousands. His response to the state’s HIV epidemic was to “go home and pray on it,” a policy that caused HIV deaths to spike. A longtime critic of science-based policy, he denied that smoking causes cancer while running for Congress in 2000.

Since joining the Trump administration Mike Pence has filled the federal health establishment with Indiana cronies like former pharmaceutical lobbyist and drug company exec Alex Azar, now Secretary of Health and Human Services, who tripled the price of insulin when he headed Indianapolis-based Eli Lilly. In congressional testimony last Wednesday Mr. Azar would not guarantee that any coronavirus vaccine would be affordable.

More:

“Trump Put Mike Pence In Charge Of The Coronavirus Response. Public Health Experts Aren’t Having It.” Brianna Sacks, BuzzFeed

“Let’s Revisit Coronavirus Czar Mike Pence’s History on Public Health Initiatives,” Shannon Palus, Slate

“Mike Pence was criticized for his handling of Indiana’s HIV outbreak. He will lead the U.S. coronavirus response.” Washington Post

“Mike Pence ‘not up to task’ of leading US coronavirus response, say experts,” Adam Gabbatt, The Guardian

Uh-Oh:

“Was Mike Pence exposed to coronavirus?” Kathryn Krawczyk, The Week

“Student Quarantined Days After Classmates Shook Mike Pence’s Hand, Report Says,” Jamie Ross, Daily Beast

Updates:

“Trump wanted, and got, a coronavirus lead who would give politics primary consideration,” Philip Bump, Washington Post

“Pence Will Control All Coronavirus Messaging From Health Officials,” Michael D. Shear and Maggie Haberman, New York Times

“Coronavirus: Pence defends Trump Jr claim Democrats want ‘millions’ to die,” Martin Pengelly and Amanda Holpuch, The Guardian

“HHS Secretary Azar: ‘I’m still chairman of the task force’ on coronavirus after Trump says Pence is leading response,” Caroline Kelly, CNN

“Trump backers see a coronavirus conspiracy,” Ben Schreckinger and Alice Miranda Ollstein, Politico

“Mick Mulvaney: Media Is Exaggerating Coronavirus Coverage to ‘Bring Down the President,’” Pilar Melendez, Daily Beast

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Image (“Mike Pence, MD”) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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Losing the War Against Bacteria

January 29, 2020

Bacteria are outsmarting our wonder drugs. A New York Times videos.

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Linus Pauling’s Vitamin C Fraud

December 4, 2019

Linus Pauling, Nobel-winning chemist, believed that megadoses of vitamin C would prevent colds and cancer. Nope.

More:

“How Linus Pauling duped America into believing vitamin C cures colds,” Megan Thielking, Vox

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De humani corporis fabrica

March 26, 2019

De humani corporis fabrica

in 1543, long before Gray’s Anatomy, Our Bodies Ourselves, or Dr. Oz, Andreas Vesalius had a best-selling medical book, De humani corporis fabrica (“Fabric of the Human Body”). While Amazon has the facsimile, Atlas Obscura visited the New York Academy of Medicine to look at an original edition:

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Henry VIII and the NFL

February 15, 2016

Henry VIII and the NFL
Henry Tudor, aka HRH Henry VIII, King of England, Wales, Ireland  & etc. and Supreme Head of the Church of England, was also a musician, composer, poet, firm believer in marriage, and a devoted sportsman. He liked archery, dressage, hawking and hunting, but most of all he loved jousting. HRH suffered jousting accidents in 1524 and 1525, while he was in his thirties. A later jousting accident in 1536 seriously damaged His Majesty’s leg, and Henry’s tyrannical behavior has often been attributed to that injury.

Not so fast, says Yale’s Dr. Arash Salardini; cumulative jousting blows to the helmeted royal head may have caused Traumatic Brain Injury or CTE, just like helmeted NFL players get.

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