The French Covid-19 Doctor Who Defies Clueless Health Authorities And Medical Experts
We at Thailand Medical News are proud to republished an original news article by by Olivier Lucazeau and Antoine Bouthier from AFP featuring a remarkable doctor with true passion for healing unlike those clueless medical experts sitting in the comfort of their aircon offices and trying to dictate policies and protocols while being clueless about the macro and micro perspectives of the disease.
People queue in front of a top Marseille hospital to get a coronavirus test on
demand after one of its infectious disease experts, controversial Professor
Didier Raoult, opened doors to all, against official policy (Credit: AFP)
Outside a hospital in the French Mediterranean port city Marseille, anxious, patients wearing masks form a line zig-zagging back several streets.Old and young all keep strictly one metre (yard) apart and an eerie silence hangs in the air, punctuated only by indignant shouts as some try to skip the queue.
Many of these hundreds got up at the crack of dawn to get in line to be screened for coronavirus in France where normally tests are reserved for health care workers or people most at risk.
Health authorities in Franc are currently carrying out 5,000 tests every day but officials admit this is nowhere near enough to catch every case, meaning the real number infected could be much higher than the published data.
Prominent but controversial French doctor Didier Raoult, head of the department specialising in infectious diseases in La Timone hospital in Marseille is changing things radically in another way.
Controversial French professor Didier Raoult Raoult says he has successfuly used
hydroxychloroquine, an old malaria remedy, to treat coronavirus patients which critics
say should be tested and proved first (Credit: AFP)
Dr Raoult announced with five professors and doctors on Sunday that anyone feeling feverish or simply anxious could ask to be tested at the clinic.
Louise Serrano, a student has a temperature, a headache and a cough and has come for the screening with her father.
The 20-year-old said "My uncle is sick and my mother too, we prefer to get tested so we can protect them. They are more at risk of dying than us.
Gilbert Salomone was waiting at 7am in line with his wife and daughter for the clinic to open two hours later. The 49-year-old only has light symptoms and admits that he's not particularly worried.
He said, "It's mostly to find out whether we have it or not, to set our minds at rest. For the test, it's very quick, a swab in the nose and it's over. We will be contacted within 48 hours if we are declared positive.
Most people in the queue do not appear to have severe symptoms but an elderly man suddenly collapses. People around him attempt to carry him up the steps of the hospital, before healthcare workers come out with a wheelchair and take him inside.
A doctor leaving the hospital after a long overnight shift said, "Dr Raoult is crazy, all these people should be at home!"
Simply showing up at a hospital just to take a coronavirus test flies in the face of official French policy which is to stay at home in isolation if a person fears having the disease and to only go to hospital in case of breathing difficulties.
An attached banner to the railing outside reads: "We support Professor Raoult" and the doctor is by no means a newcomer to controversy.
For three weeks now, the eccentric scientist with shoulder-length blond hair and a grey beard has been advocating the use of chloroquine, long used as a treatment for malaria as a cure for coronavirus.
Dr Raoult, 68, is a member of the expert committee advising the French government on the coronavirus.
To date, he reported that after treating 24 patients for six days with hydroxychloroquine, the virus disappeared in all but a quarter of them.
Dr Raoult also believes it is essential to trust the results obtained in China by leading pulmonary disease expert Dr Zhong Nanshan, whose tests appear to confirm the efficiency of the drug.
Even the US president Donald Trump has also advocated the use of chloroquine.
However, the research has not yet been peer reviewed or published, and Raoult has come under fire from scientists and government officials alike.
Most of his critics have pointed to problems with the protocol and worrying side effects of the drug. Fakemed, a group of scientists against fake news in health, has lambasted the professor.
Dr Raoult said, "A video accusing me of fake news has been viewed 450,000 times on Facebook. But it's good publicity, they can carry on saying such awful things.”
So far even the the mayor of Nice, Christian Estrosi, has said he is being treated with chloroquine after being diagnosed with the virus and he publicly defended Raoult.
20-year-old Talia Abad Waiting in line for her turn, said she would be open to trying the medicine. "People close to me work in the healthcare sector and they trust the treatment. And because I trust them, I'm willing to experiment.”
A first clinical trial to test four treatments for coronavirus, including chloroquine, was launched on Sunday in seven European countries. The study is to be conducted on 3,200 patients.
So far the Covid-19 crisis has seen health and government officials and also certain medical experts make a generally fool of the public by using fake news and misinformation platforms to prevent the public from knowing the real truth and also from getting the real proper treatments. From day one we heard lies from them that the disease was not transmissible from human to human, that it was not airborne, that the virus could not survive on surfaces, that the virus did not mutate etc.
We are also seeing drug candidates being quickly stockpiled in countries for the rich and the politicians while they are making it more difficult for the masses to get hold of these drugs. We have certain social media platforms also trying to control news dissemination. But unfortunately, most of the people do not see that and start doing something even by boycotting these social media platforms to even some of these websites that claim to be official sites disseminating actual official reporting.
What is worst is that we have many intellectually challenged people who will believe these sites without doing due diligence and will give death threats to sites like us. Sometimes, sad to say and it is not actually politically or ethically right to say this, but maybe the Covid-19 is here to finally cleanse the world of the intellectually challenged, the corrupted, selfish and greedy people. But unfortunately many innocent people are also being infected in the process and some have died.