LAURA INGRAHAM (HOST): I want to play just a small snippet of a conversation Dr. Oz, you just had with one of the leading epidemiologists in Europe. Dr. Didier Raoult and a small test group that he convenes. Six people ultimately dropped out for whatever reason but a small test group of individuals treated with that old antimalarial and azithromycin. Let's watch.
INGRAHAM: Yet Dr. Oz, there are so many people out there, including on some of our cable competitors, who are rushing to the cameras saying, You can't do this because it's not approved by the FDA.” What would your response be to that?
DR. MEHMET OZ: Well, I was intrigued by this physician Dr. Raoult who is actually world famous. He's well respected within France, the other French center, some of them are copying his protocol, and he acknowledges it was a pilot study. But as an infectious disease specialist, he argues if I got rid of all the virus in patients who were treated on this protocol within six days. All the virus gone from their noses. That means they're not infectious anymore. So that's a good thing and if I reduce significantly the amount of virus they had throughout the course of treatment, that's a good thing. He shared with me that the clinical outcomes were looking OK but he didn’t want to share that publicly because he hasn't got enough data.
The question is, are we going to do clinical trials and the answer Laura, yes, we have to do them. As a physician, as I'm proud of our American tradition, we've got to do the randomized trials, the big trials that the FDA wants. The question isn't that and by the way, I'm helping to fund the one in Columbia, while there are others that [UNINTELLIGIBLE]. There are some great programs that are already starting on this process. We'll get that done but it takes a while and in the meantime, what are we going to do for the many doctors who want to treat their patients, because these are prescription drugs, who feel that patients might benefit from this, and there are plenty who have reached out. And I would argue, we can do both: Do the clinical trials, be sure we're doing the right thing but make sure first clinicians when they use a drug that FDA approved, both -- in this case both are -- off-label for indication where there's some evidence and it's not just this French doctor, it's also in China where there was some evidence of success, that we should allow that to -- again, tracking all the information, learning what's being done but allow that. Otherwise people are going to do it anyway behind our back.