President Trump said catching COVID-19 was "a blessing from God" in a nearly five-minute-long video he released Wednesday, in which he also claimed it was his idea to be given an experimental antibody treatment produced by Regeneron Pharmaceuticals.
"I think this was a blessing from God, that I caught it," Trump said. "This was a blessing in disguise. I caught it, I heard about this drug, I said let me take it, it was my suggestion ... And I think if I didn't catch it, we'd be looking at that like a number of other drugs."
A MESSAGE FROM THE PRESIDENT! pic.twitter.com/uhLIcknAjT
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 7, 2020
Trump also falsely described the Regeneron treatment, which has not yet been approved by the FDA, as a "cure" for COVID-19. "It was like, unbelievable," he said. "I felt good immediately." The president added that "hopefully this is going to be not just a therapeutic, it will be much more than a therapeutic, you're gonna get better, you're gonna get better fast, just like I did." He also claimed "we're going to work it so you're going to get [the experimental drugs] and you're gonna get them free."
The Regeneron antibody cocktail has been shown to "[reduce] the amount of virus in the body as well as the time it took patients to recover," BBC News explains. "However, this was in people who did not need hospital treatment and the data has not been seen by scientists or doctors." While the drug is promising, "the evidence in patients is still very limited," the BBC adds. Trump has notably bounced between promoting a number of miracle cures for COVID-19 since the outbreak began, including hydroxychloroquine and sunlight.
The president spent three days at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center this weekend, where he received oxygen, steroids, as well as the experimental Regeneron treatment while in the care of world-class doctors. "For someone who isn't president, that would cost more than $100,000 in the American health system," The New York Times reports — and that is even if the Regeneron treatment was free.