There’s a video that has gone viral and circling the web of a Houston doctor who gave a speech praising the effects of the drug hydroxychloroquine on COVID-19 patients. She goes on to say that face masks aren’t necessary to stop transmission of the highly contagious coronavirus and says that it has worked with people having pre-existing conditions. The short video has garnered tens of millions of views on Facebook in as little as 24 hours. Donald Trump Jr. declared the video a “must watch,” and President Trump himself retweeted the video.
So what’s the truth about hydroxychloroquine and this doctor?
Well, what we found out is that the doctor is Stella Immanuel and is a registered physician in Texas, according to a Texas Medical Board database. She operates a medical clinic out of a strip mall next to her church, Firepower Ministries. She’s apparently a pediatrician and a religious minister, who has a history of making bizarre claims about medical issues. She has often claimed that gynecological problems like cysts and endometriosis are in fact caused by people having sex in their dreams with demons and witches.
Immanuel said in her video that “Nobody needs to get sick,” and “this virus has a cure.” With that cure being hydroxychloroquine.
Now, we walk a fine line in trying not to discredit this doctor–she’s a sista, who obviously works hard–but we need to get down the truth. While we all want this coronavirus to be over just like everyone else, we need to know is this drug really safe? Does she really believe in this drug? Does it really work? Or is something else going on?
We don’t have any evidence and we don’t have any reports from any of these doctors patients, nor the hospitals they presumably reside. USA Today did an expose that most of the doctors had a concierge practice or have done some emergency room work in the past.
What we do know is that Dr. Immanuel gave her very passionate viral speech on the steps of the Supreme Court at the “White Coat Summit,” a gathering of a handful of doctors who call themselves America’s Frontline Doctors (she wears the white coat in the video with that group’s name on it). The event was organized by a group called Tea Party Patriots.
While the Tea Party Patriots hosted the event, it also featured Rep. Ralph Norman, R-S.C. On its website, Tea Party Patriots published several other videos of the same doctors speaking at a summit, billed as part of the “Second Opinion Project.”
“American life has fallen casualty to a massive disinformation campaign. We can speculate on how this has happened, and why it has continued, but the purpose of the American Frontline Doctor’s Summit is to empower Americans to stop living in fear,” Tea Party Patriots writes on its website.
We also found out, according to Immanuel’s twitter profile, that she believes that “sex with demons will make you sick” and she gives advice on how to get delivered from “demon sperm.”
Many of her written pieces and comments on just about everything COVID-related can be found on her twitter profile here.
So what does the FDA and CDC think?
As of July 2020, the FDA included an official report of serious heart rhythm problems and other safety issues, including blood and lymph system disorders, kidney injuries, and liver problems and failure.
And just one month prior, the FDA stated that “based on ongoing analysis and emerging scientific data, FDA has revoked