The White House pushed back Friday at a torrent of criticism of President Donald Trump, saying his apparent suggestion that disinfectant could be injected to treat patients with COVID-19 was taken out of context.
During a televised briefing on the coronavirus pandemic, Trump mused on Thursday that researchers might investigate ways of injecting disinfectant to cure the disease — comments that sparked outrage among experts.
“Leave it to the media to irresponsibly take President Trump out of context and run with negative headlines,” White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany said in a statement.
“President Trump has repeatedly said that Americans should consult with medical doctors regarding coronavirus treatment, a point that he emphasized again during yesterday’s briefing.”
The White House briefing was focused on research findings suggesting the virus was quickly destroyed by sunlight, raising hopes the pandemic could ease as the northern hemisphere summer approaches. The presentation also touched on disinfectants that can kill the novel coronavirus.
That prompted Trump to speculate about whether it would be possible to bring “the light inside the body, which you can do either through the skin or in some other way.’
“And then I see the disinfectant, where it knocks it out in a minute,” Trump continued. “Is there a way we can do something like that, by injection inside or almost a cleaning?”
“Because, you see, it gets in the lungs and it does a tremendous number on the lungs,” Trump continued, apparently referring to disinfectant. “So it would be interesting to check that out.”
At least two manufacturers of cleaning products sold in the United States issued statements after Trump’s address, warning people against using them as a treatment.