In perhaps the most bizarre press-related moment to come out of the COVID-19 pandemic, United States President Donald J. Trump proposed the injection of disinfectants into the lungs of coronavirus patients as a potential treatment. This suggestion came about during the Coronavirus press briefing on April 23rd after a presentation given by Department of Homeland security lead Bill Bryan. The presentation illustrated that COVID-19 infections last for a shorter period of time in warmer climates, stating “The virus dies quickest in sunlight”.
Bryan’s phrase spawned a series of suggestions from the president, initially leading him to propose blasting infected people with large amounts of UV light in order to kill the virus. These suggestions culminated in the president citing the efficacy of certain disinfectants and their ability to kill the virus in one minute.
“I see the disinfectant that knocks it out in a minute, one minute. And is there a way we can do something like that by injection inside or almost a cleaning? As you see, it gets in the lungs, it does a tremendous number on the lungs, so it would be interesting to check that.” Said the president. It goes without saying that this would likely kill a patient.
The president’s musings have naturally drawn large amounts of criticism from people who believe that ill-informed individuals may attempt to follow the president’s suggestions. Similar criticism was the result of the president’s fervent endorsement of hydroxychloroquine, an anti-malaria drug that has proven to be a poor candidate for Coronavirus treatment. “This notion of injecting or ingesting any type of cleansing product into the body is irresponsible and it’s dangerous,” said Dr. Vin Gupta, a pulmonologist. “It’s a common method that people utilize when they want to kill themselves.”In the days following the incident, the president stated that his suggestion was intended to be seen as “sarcastic”.