WASHINGTON — In an extraordinary exchange, President Donald Trump and the government’s top infectious disease expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci, publicly sparred Friday on whether a malaria drug would work to treat people with coronavirus disease. The scene played out on national television during the daily White House briefing on the outbreak. Anxious for answers, Americans heard conflicting ones from a just-the-facts scientist and a president who operates on gut instinct. Reporters asked both men — first Fauci then Trump — if a malaria drug called hydroxychloroquine could be used to prevent COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus. A day earlier, when Fauci wasn’t with him at that briefing, Trump had called attention to the drug. On Friday, Fauci took the reporter’s question and got right to the point. “No,” he said. “The answer … is no. “The information that you’re referring to specifically is anecdotal,” Fauci added firmly. “It was not done in a controlled clinical trial, so you really can’t make any definitive statement about it.” He went on to explain that the Food and Drug Administration is looking for a way to make the drug available for emergency use, but in a manner that gives the government


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