Yasmina Kattou with AFP 13:52 p.m., May 29, 2023Professor Didier Raoult is once again in the sights of doctors in response to the absence of sanctions in the face of the "largest known 'wild' therapeutic trial" that he would have committed. Retired since the summer of 2021 from his position as university professor-hospital practitioner, the microbiologist was replaced at the end of August at the head of the IHU Méditerranée by Pierre-Edouard Fournier.Covid-19: Doctors denounce a "wild" therapeutic trial of Professor Raoult and ask for sanctions
Sixteen learned societies of medicine on Sunday challenged the authorities on a lack of sanctions in the face of the "largest known 'wild' therapeutic trial", denouncing the study of Didier Raoult, former boss of the IHU of Marseille, on hydroxychloroquine. In an article published on the website of Le Monde, these companies involved in research blame teams from the University Hospital Institute (IHU) Méditerranée Infection "the systematic prescription, patients with Covid-19 (...) medicinal products as varied as hydroxychloroquine, zinc, ivermectin or azithromycin (...) without a solid pharmacological basis, and in the absence of any evidence of efficacy".
Study on 30,000 patients
More seriously, according to them, these prescriptions were continued "for more than a year after the formal demonstration of their ineffectiveness". The authorities must take "measures adapted to the mistakes committed", in the name of "patient safety" and the "credibility of French medical research", they conclude. Professor Raoult, who had gained media fame by holding positions, now discredited, on Covid-19, including the supposed effectiveness of treatments such as hydroxychloroquine, published in March a "pre-print", that is to say a non-peer-reviewed version, of his study on more than 30,000 Covid patients.
In April, the French Medicines Agency (ANSM) estimated that the use of hydroxychloroquine "exposes patients to potential adverse effects that can be serious". The Marseille prosecutor's office had opened in July 2022 a judicial investigation, after a scathing report from the ANSM, for "forgery in writing", "use of forgery in writing" and "interventional research involving a human person not justified by his usual care". At this stage, there has been no indictment, the prosecutor's office told AFP at the end of May.
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After a damning inspection report (IGAS / IGESR) on the medical, scientific and managerial excesses of the IHU under the leadership of Didier Raoult, the government had also announced on September 5 to take the court. On this aspect, the Marseille prosecutor's office is still in the analysis phase, he told AFP. Questioned Sunday during the Grand Jury RTL / LCI / Le Figaro, the Minister of Health, François Braun, recalled that his ministry and that of Education and Research had seized the prosecutor on the mode of operation of the IHU of Marseille. "The investigation is ongoing, I will say no more," he said. Asked if the investigation also looked into the new "wild" clinical trial, he replied: "Of course."
Retired since the summer of 2021 from his position as university professor-hospital practitioner, Didier Raoult was replaced at the end of August at the head of the IHU Méditerranée by Pierre-Edouard Fournier. Professor Raoult, who comes to the IHU "from time to time", is now professor emeritus and supervises two theses that began before his departure, according to a spokesman for the institution. Within the IHU, all clinical trials involving humans have been suspended since Professor Fournier's arrival. The institute told AFP to expect a return from the ANSM on this subject. On the ANSM side, "the next step is the follow-up, and potentially, the lifting of the injunctions made to the IHU, as on clinical trials. The IHU must demonstrate that they have met expectations," said a spokeswoman for the drug agency, with no time horizon.