The information age is a wonderful thing. It puts a previously unthinkable amount of information at our fingertips, and that is mostly a blessing, but it can also be a curse.
You see, in an age where a single google search can return hundreds of articles, all with varying positions, in an instant, you have to be even more careful about confirmation bias, not less. That means that you have to not only read and educate yourself, but it should also mean that you have to ask advice from someone more educated on the subject than you.
My wife, for example, is an outstanding internet researcher. I mean it, if she can't find it, it likely doesn't exist. She's smart and savvy, and you'd be hard pressed to find someone who can sift through the clutter of the internet faster or better than her. Yet, when she comes across a subject of medical information with which she is not familiar, she does the smartest thing I think she does, she asks our family pediatrician's office.
Now, sometimes the Dr. answers, and sometimes it's the nurse practitioner, but the fact is that someone with a degree and experience is reviewing what's she's found and giving us solid and educated advice on it. Smart? You bet.
So enter this seemingly daily debate about Hydroxychloroquine. Some are saying loudly that it's a cure while others are touting each and every possible side effect as if everyone will get it to it's worst degree and it will kill more people than the Corona virus. Both extremes are silly, and neither are true.
What HQC is, in fact, is a treatment. That's right, it's NOT a cure, but neither is it a poison pill. It's a treatment that people should take IF it has been properly prescribed by a medical doctor and their progress or regress is being monitored by the same. That's the key, a medical doctor, someone with an MD, 8-12 years of schooling, at least one year of residency, multiple years of practice and an ongoing continuing education requirement to maintain their licence. Yes, indeed, a DOCTOR is the key, not google.
It always stuns me when someone says that they're smart enough to sort it all out on their own. Look, I'm a smart guy, ok? I graduated Cum Laude with my Bachelor's Degree and am working on my Masters. I don't say that to brag, I say that to establish the platform for my next statement. I would never assume that any amount of google searching and "personal research" would qualify me or my opinion on the same level as my Uncle Brian who is a Medical Doctor with multiple decades of practice. It doesn't, and it's not even close.
I understand the desire to see things open up. I understand the desire to see life return to normal. But selling HQC as a "cure" that works for "everyone" is no different than a snake oil salesman attempting to sell someone the "cure for all that ails them." It WILL work for some people, and praise the Lord for that, but it won't work for everyone, and generally speaking, it's a Medical Doctor who will be able to tell the difference.
Likewise, I understand the desire to be safe, and I understand that people fear that if others believe that there is a "cure" that they'll become irresponsible and lax. There's a high likelihood that they will. But making HQC out to be some kind of evil drug on par with opoids or steroids is just as reckless and will lead people away from seeking a Doctor's advice, and/or will keep them from taking it even if it is prescribed.
The BEST thing that ALL of us can do is to back our doctors and medical professionals, support them in this fight, follow their advice on what to take and/or not take, and realize that the medical process takes time, and often doesn't produce silver bullet cures, but instead produces treatments that can be used or combined to allow the body to heal itself. Support our medical professionals. Trust their education and opinion. And above all, remember, your google search cannot replace their Medical Degree and experience. No matter how long it took you to research it.