Trump sends hydroxychloroquine and ventilators to Brazil

The White House announced Sunday that the U.S. will send 2 million doses of hydroxychloroquine and 1,000 ventilators to Brazil to help the South American country confront COVID-19.

The White House said in a joint statement with the Brazilian government that the doses of hydroxychloroquine will be used as preventative treatment for nurses, doctors, and other health-care workers.

Brazilian citizens who contract the virus will also be allowed to use the drug outside of hospitals.  

The U.S. and Brazil will also launch a joint research effort, including randomized controlled clinical trials, to test hydroxychloroquine's use as a preventive measure and early treatment of COVID-19.

“Going forward, the United States and Brazil will remain in close coordination in the shared fight against the coronavirus pandemic and the ongoing regional response to safeguard public health, further limit the spread of the coronavirus, advance the early development of a vaccine, and save lives,” the statement reads.

President Trump has consistently pushed for wider use of hydroxychloroquine to treat and prevent COVID-19. The inexpensive drug is already approved to treat malaria and lupus. 

Trump himself announced earlier this month that he was taking the drug as a preventative measure.

Brazil is being hit hard by the coronavirus this month as it has counted almost 500,000 confirmed cases, the second-most of any country behind the U.S.’s more than 1.7 million. At least 27,878 people have died from COVID-19 in Brazil, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.