While Trump Touts ‘Cure’ Made By Regeneron, Its CEO Is A Member Of Trump Golf Club

Topline

The CEO of Regeneron —which makes the experimental Covid-19 therapy taken by President Trump — is also a member of Trump’s golf club, and the two have met and discussed Regeneron’s drugs, according to a report that casts new light on Trump’s exclusive access to the company’s experimental antibody treatment that he lauds as a “cure” for Covid-19 and vows to make freely available

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Regeneron CEO Leonard Schleifer is reportedly a member of Trump National golf club in Briarcliff … [+] Manor, New York

AFP via Getty Images

Key Facts

The Guardian reports that Leonard Schleifer — who Trump reportedly calls “Lenny” — is a member of the Trump National golf club in Briarcliff Manor, New York, and had met the president in May to discuss the drugs his company was developing. 

The relationship casts new light on Trump’s ability to access the treatment, which has not been approved for widespread use, and incorrect public proclamations that it is a “cure” for Covid-19. 

Trump was treated with Regeneron’s experimental antibody therapy following his diagnosis with Covid-19 on Friday following a compassionate use request made by his doctors, which grants access in rare circumstances.

The experimental therapy is unavailable to most Americans with fewer than 10 other people having been treated under compassionate use arrangements, a Regeneron spokesperson said

Trump piled lavish praise on the therapy following his treatment, incorrectly calling it a “cure” before vowing, without saying how, to make it available to all Americans for free; Regeneron’s antibody therapy is not currently approved for widespread use and is still undergoing clinical trials. 

Following the president’s comments, the biotechnology firm applied to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for emergency use approval.  

Key Background 

Trump was taken to Walter Reed Medical Center less than 24 hours after he was diagnosed with Covid-19 on Friday. In addition to Regeneron’s antibody therapy, the president also has received the experimental antiviral remdesivir, produced by Gilead Sciences and approved for use by the FDA under an emergency authorization, and the steroid dexamethasone, which is ordinarily reserved for severe cases. 

Trump has piled praise on Regeneron’s therapy in the days since his treatment, and called on regulators to approve Regeneron’s request for emergency authorization in a video Wednesday. $500 million. Regeneron has received more than $500 million from the federal government as a part of Operation Warp Speed

What To Watch For 

Keep an eye on the FDA. The organization will evaluate Regeneron’s request to authorize its experimental antibody therapy for emergency use which could see the therapy rolled out across the U.S.  

Crucial Quote

Regeneron CEO Leonard Schleifer told CNBC that treating the president with the company’s experimental antibody therapy created a “very tough situation” for the company as the therapy has not received approval for widespread use. 

Big Number 

50,000. Regeneron said it currently has enough doses for roughly 50,000 patients, with plans to expand this to 300,000 within the next few months. 

Tangent

This week Eli Lilly also requested emergency authorization from the FDA for its antibody therapy to treat Covid-19. 

Further Reading 

All The President’s Medicine (Forbes)

What You Need To Know About Trump’s Experimental Coronavirus Antibody Treatment (Forbes)

Regeneron CEO Says Trump Receiving Experimental Antibody Treatment Creates ‘Very Tough Situation’ (Forbes)

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