Trump mocked for ‘brilliant germ’ remark
US President Donald Trump has been mocked on social media for referring to the coronavirus as a "germ that has gotten so brilliant" it's even outsmarting antibiotics.
As most of us know, antibiotics are useless against any virus, let alone one as deadly and complex as the coronavirus, which has so far killed more than 18,700 Americans and infected at least half a million others.
But that didn't stop Mr Trump from raving about the coronavirus' resistance to drugs used to treat bacterial, not viral, infections, with a 35 second clip of the embarrassing comments sparking ridicule online.
Fact check: Antibiotics have *never* worked against viruses.— Belinda Barnet (@manjusrii) April 10, 2020
"This is very complex, this is a brilliant enemy, you know this is a brilliant enemy," he told reporters at a coronavirus task force briefing at the White House on Friday.
"They develop drugs like the antibiotics … you see … antibiotics used to solve every problem. Now one of the biggest problems the world is the germ has gotten so brilliant that the antibiotic cannot keep up with it.
"And they're constantly trying to come up with a new … people go to the hospital and they catch … they go for a heart operation - that's no problem - but they end up dying from … from … problems.
"You know the problems I'm talking about."
Mr Trump added: "There's a whole genius to it. It's hidden but it's very smart."
A video clip of the bizarre ramble has attracted more than three million views on Twitter in less than 24 hours and plenty of ridicule.
"Fact check: Antibiotics have *never* worked against viruses," tweeted Australian media expert Dr Belinda Barnet.
Ms Krassenstein wrote: "My 6-year-old nephew knows that antibiotics are useless on ALL viruses. Donald Trump does not! How can such a stupid man be our President?"
British lawyer and activist Dr Shola Mos-Shogbamimu tweeted: "Vaccines not Antibiotics fight viruses.
"It's called #coronavirus for a reason. The audacity of Trump propping his ignorance of medicine as authority will get Americans killed #TrumpVirus. #TrumpPressConference does more damage than good. The US & UK are screwed."
Australian virologist Ian Mackay said simply: "Oh ffs!"
Vaccines not Antibiotics fight viruses. It's called #coronavirus for a reason The audacity of #Trump propping his ignorance of medicine as authority will get Americas killed #TrumpVirus. #TrumpPressConference does more damage than good. The US & UK are screwed. https://t.co/TFEfDIqTB0— Dr Shola Mos-Shogbamimu (@SholaMos1) April 11, 2020
It's not the first time the American president has embarrassed himself in the face of a in this way.
Last month he was caught on video asking his chief medical officers if they were absolutely sure "a solid flu vaccine" couldn't prevent the coronavirus.
Mr Trump has also been criticised for spruiking antimalarial drug hydroxychloroquine as a "game changer" in the fight against the pandemic, despite its serious and well-documented side effects.
His comments have also led to a shortage of the drug in Australia, where it has been used by rheumatologists for decades to treat lupus and arthritis.
Last week a Brisbane oncologist told news.com.au a cancer patient of hers had been unable to get hold of the drug at three separate pharmacies to treat their arthritis.
And Australian Rheumatology Association (ARA) president and associate professor Dave Nicholls expressed concerns a hydroxychloroquine shortage could lead to major organ issues in patients.
"Most of the patients we treat have chronic auto-immune disorders so if their medication supply runs out, that condition starts to flare up again," he said.
"They can have skin rashes, severe painful arthritis, and even more serious issues with their liver function, their kidney function or even potentially more serious than that.
"And that leads to those people being hospitalised and using up valuable resources that should be used more appropriately."
Originally published as Trump mocked for 'brilliant germ' remark