By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily
Outgoing U.S. Sen. Mike Enzi has joined his colleague Sen. John Barrasso in praising the newly announced rapid coronavirus test.
During a Senate Governmental Affairs Committee hearing on Thursday, Enzi emphasized that the country is learning more about potential early treatment options for the virus.
The rapid test would give results within half an hour, allowing patients to have more time to contact anyone they’ve recently been around, as Barrasso pointed out during a Fox Business appearance this week.
“People aren’t looking for next year’s answer, they’re looking for this year’s answer,” Enzi said. “I see a real state of panic, mostly because they think until the vaccine comes out there is no answer.”
The committee also heard from panelist George Fareed, a medical director and family medicine specialist, who highlighted the benefit of treatment “cocktails” that can help when someone tests positive for the virus.
Fareed said cocktail options are “extremely well tolerated” and are available with a doctor’s prescription. He noted some countries are dispensing packets that patients can bring home off-the-shelf that can help with early treatment of the virus.
Enzi said the hearing was the first time he had had heard explanations from health officials in the Senate about the critical nature of early treatments for the virus.
Dr. Peter McCullough, vice chief of internal medicine at Baylor University Medical Center, said there is a treatment algorithm that has been peer-reviewed by a journal listed in the National Library of Medicine.
“This is the best available science,” McCullough said.
McCullough said there is evidence to support each component of the treatment algorithm and added that it’s crucial for everyone to take this pandemic seriously to avoid mass mortality in the coming weeks.
“I appreciate all this information on early treatment,” Enzi said. “Some of it works, some of it doesn’t. That’s with everything that we know about when you get sick. But when people are thinking maybe they will die, they want some kind of solution.”