Expert says he was fired for opposing the use of hydroxychloroquine

Expert Says He Was Fired For Opposing The Use Of Hydroxychloroquine

Washington – The former head of a government agency fighting the coronavirus pandemic said Wednesday that he was fired for opposing attempts to promote an antimalarial drug that President Donald Trump touts as a remedy against COVID-19 without any evidence.

Rick Bright, former director of the Advanced Biomedical Research and Development Authority (Barda), said in a statement that he was summarily removed from his post on Tuesday and reassigned to a lesser post. His attorneys, Debra Katz and Lisa Banks, said it was “plain and simple retaliation.”

The controversy has revolved around the hydroxychloroquine antimalarial drug since Trump began promoting it from the podium of the White House newsroom.

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La Barda is a unit of the Department of Health and Human Services that was formed to combat threats of bioterrorism and infectious diseases. He has recently attempted to undertake work to create a coronavirus vaccine.

“I am raising my voice because to fight this deadly virus, science – and not politics or nepotism – must lead the fight,” Bright said in a statement released by her lawyers.

“Specifically, and against misleading guidelines, I limited the widespread use of chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine, which the government promotes as a universal remedy, but clearly lacks scientific merit,” said Bright, who has a doctorate in immunology.

“I also resisted attempts to fund potentially dangerous drugs that are promoted by those with political connections,” he added.

Questioned about Bright during his press conference on Wednesday, Trump said: “I have never heard of him.”

“The guy says he was fired,” Trump said. “Maybe it was. Maybe not. I don’t know who it is. “

Bright and her attorneys request investigations from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) General Inspection and the Office of the Special Prosecutor, an independent agency whose duties include protecting government whistleblowers.

“Although I am prepared to evaluate all options and think ‘out of the box’ in search of effective treatments, I rightfully resisted attempts to provide the American people with a drug whose effectiveness has not been proven,” Bright wrote.

He also referred to “clashes with HHS political leaders” over his own efforts to “invest first in vaccines and supplies crucial to saving the lives of Americans.” One of the biggest criticisms of the Trump administration’s response to the pandemic is the little that was done during the month of February to stock up on necessary equipment.

“Science, in the service of the health and safety of the American people, must always outperform politics,” Bright wrote.

HHS did not immediately respond to Bright’s allegations. The agency’s general inspection did not respond to its request for an investigation. But on Capitol Hill, some Democratic lawmakers backed the call for an investigation.

“President Trump is not a doctor, scientist, or medical professional,” said Rep. Rosa DeLauro, who heads the lower house panel that oversees HHS finances. “The notion that he and his political appointees are making personnel decisions based on how effective the president believes drugs like chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine to be … is completely unacceptable.”

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