Brazil latest: Bolsonaro bets controversial drug will

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Hydroxochloroquine, originally held as a potential treatment for the virus, was dropped by health groups around the world. A series of studies found that the drug had no effect in treating COVID-19, and in some cases could cause deadly side effects. Despite the warnings, Bolsonaro has repeatedly praised the drug as a cure for the virus.

After the president caught COVID-19, he claimed he has started taking the drug to fight his sickness.

In a televised interview on Tuesday, Bolsonaro said he felt better almost immediately after taking two doses of hydroxychloroquine.

He said his only regret about the drug was not using it sooner.

Bolsonaro said: “If I had taken hydroxychloroquine preventively, I would still be working.”

In a later video posted the same day, the president swallows a third pill and boasts about it’s benefits.

Bolsonaro said: “Today I’m a lot better, so certainly it’s working.

“We know today there are other remedies that can help fight the coronavirus.

“We know none of them have their efficacy scientifically proven, but I’m one more person for whom this is working.

“So I trust hydroxychloroquine.

“And you?”

Bolsonaro also took to Twitter to shoot down critics of the drug.

On Wednesday, he wrote: “To those who cheer against hydroxychloroquine, but do not have alternatives, I regret to inform you that I am very well with its use and, with the grace of God, I will live for a long time to come.”

He then said in an interview that he’s feeling “normal”.

He added: “I even want to take a walk around here, but I can’t due to medical recommendations.”


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The president’s sickness comes after he bragged he would not suffer from the virus earlier this year.

Bolsonaro bragged: “With my history as an athlete, if I were infected with the virus I would have no reason to worry.

“I would feel nothing, or it would be at most just a little flu.”

Championing the drug is the latest move by Bolsonaro that his put him at odds with health experts.

The World Health Organisation stopped recommending hydroxychloroquine five days ago because of it’s potentially deadly side effects.

Political scientist Mauricio Santoro said to the Mail Bolsonaro’s infection was a “blow to his credibility”.

He argued: “It will be seen as another example of the failure of his coronavirus response.”

Bolsonaro has lost two health ministers throughout the virus, and the country has been without one for over 50 days.

Brazil has seen the second highest amount of coronavirus cases worldwide, at a staggering 1,713,160 as of July 9.

It also has the second highest amount of deaths from COVID-19, at 67,964 according to John Hopkins University.

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