NYC Poison Control Center Received ‘Unusually High’ Number of Calls About Bleach, Cleaners After Trump Comment

NYC Poison Control Center Received ‘Unusually High’ Number of Calls About Bleach, Cleaners After Trump Comment

In the 18 hours after President Donald Trump claimed that injecting bleach or household cleaners could cure the coronavirus, thirty New Yorkers contacted city health authorities fearing they had ingested such products — more than double the number of cases than last year over the same period of time.

None of the people who called between 9 p.m. Thursday and 3 p.m. Friday died or required hospitalization, a spokesman told the New York Daily News. From the story:

Moreover, out of the cases reported between Thursday and Friday, nine were specifically about possible exposure to Lysol. Ten were in regards to bleach and 11 about household cleaners in general, the spokesman said.

In last year’s 18-hour period, there were no cases reported about Lysol exposure and only two were specifically in regards to bleach, the data shows.

Several makers of cleaning products came out with statements telling the public that ingesting their products is harmful, despite what the president implied.

In response to the backlash, Trump decided to claim Friday that his comment was a joke. Later that afternoon he left the briefing room without taking any questions on the topic.

William Vaillancourt

William Vaillancourt

William Vaillancourt is a writer and editor from New Hampshire whose work has appeared in The Washington Post, The Boston Globe, The Progressive, Slate and Areo Magazine, among other places. He holds a BA in Political Science and History from Boston University.