Pfizer has developed an antiviral COVID-19 pill that’s known as Paxlovid. It’s been a hard-to-find item – and in some instances, the Biden administration pulled its availability in some states.
For the most part, the pill is reserved for those who are “at high risk for progression to severe COVID-19, according to the FDA.
The office for Kamala Harris identified that she began taking the antiviral pill after she tested positive for COVID. It is now causing quite the stir – why?
Why would the VP, a healthy 57-year-old who has been vaccinated and boosted against COVID, need to take the antiviral pill?
Harris, according to her office, has been completely asymptomatic. So, there would be no reason to put her on this medication. Meanwhile, people who DO need the pill are being denied.
Does the VP have any underlying health conditions that we don’t know about? That’s where things start to get a bit interesting. Her office won’t comment. This means that there may be something else going on with Harris. And considering that Biden is the only thing standing between her and the head title in the U.S., we should probably know if her health is an issue.
Jonathan Reiner, the professor of medicine and surgery at George Washington University School of Medicine & Health Sciences asked “Why would you give Paxlovid to someone without symptoms?
Others have been asking the same question. Jerome Adams, who served as Surgeon General under Trump, was quick to point out that Paxlovid isn’t supposed to be used for those who are asymptomatic and with no medical issues.
An infectious disease expert, Celine Gounder, addresses it by using another approach. “We know that the way that presidents, or in this case vice presidents, are treated is not necessarily the way the average person is treated.” Gounder said that it’s not always about what might be right for Harris but what might be best for the nation.
So, perhaps she was given Paxlovid as a way to guarantee that she wouldn’t fall victim to COVID. After all, if Biden does get taken out by the 25th amendment, we need to have Harris standing. She’s not ideal, but she’d most certainly be better than Nancy Pelosi. Until the midterms shake things up, we have to be cautious of who the line of succession would bring to the Oval Office.
While Gounder may want to make excuses for Harris since she’s the VP, there are others who take a more pragmatic approach. It’s not a fair system – and medical ethicists, in particular, are concerned that the moral rationalization for Harris to take the antiviral pill is simply because of her position.
Harris was able to get the antiviral pill the same day that she tested positive. Meanwhile, many people struggle to get a prescription.
The only people who can provide a prescription are physicians, physician assistants, and registered nurses. Patients have to get tested, visit a doctor’s office, and then, find a participating pharmacy that will fill the prescription.
We’ve seen the way in which Harris has been able to work around the COVID protocols. Unfortunately, her gaining access to Paxlovid even though she doesn’t need it isn’t the first time she’s been able to use her position to her benefit. Her communications director tested positive in April, and she showed up maskless. And when she’s been maskless around others who have tested positive, her office was quick to say that she was “practicing social distancing – with limited and brief interactions from her chair.”
This is yet another example of rules for thee but not for me. Harris will get the COVID antiviral medication while others get sicker because of their inability to get it. Fair? Hardly.