Socialist Venezuelan dictator Nicolás Maduro announced Sunday the establishment of a “National Scientific Center for Ozone,” which he said would promote the use of “ozone therapy” to help Chinese coronavirus patients.
Ozone (O3) is a toxic gas that has surfaced repeatedly in the past year in questionable attempts to help coronavirus patients. The American Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has warned against the use of ozone to help coronavirus patients or as a disinfectant, as the amount of gas needed to kill pathogens is greater than what is tolerable for a human being.
Despite the lack of evidence that ozone could play a role in helping Chinese coronavirus patients overcome an infection, Maduro has repeatedly touted it as a viable cure. In October, Maduro announced during a national broadcast that the Venezuelan regime would promote “rectal ozone therapy,” in which doctors administer the toxic gas into a patient’s rectum, as a legitimate treatment for Chinese coronavirus.
Thanks to over two decades of socialism, Venezuela has one of the world’s least functional healthcare systems. Venezuelan clinics and hospitals have suffered severe shortages of basic medicines — from painkillers to antibiotics to birth control and cancer medications — since at least 2016, medical professionals have denounced. The inability to fight basic infections has triggered skyrocketing rates of amputations. As Maduro’s leadership has also resulted in extreme shortages of cleaning products and the near-total collapse of the electric grid, hospitals have also suffered pest infestations. Officials attempting to maintain morgues have reported extreme cases of decomposition, which present a health hazard.
“We will take the ozone and ozone therapy to every CDI [Total Diagnostic Center],” Maduro promised Sunday. “It is the first solid step of massification that we have to push forward. This has all been discussed, it’s all planned, the construction of the machines necessary for ozone therapy, and I hope that in this first semester of 2021 we will firmly advance in the massification of ozone therapy.”
Maduro also claimed the gas has “great benefits for health, for the total health of the human being, for the treatment of traumatic afflictions and spinal afflictions,” in addition to its alleged use against the Chinese coronavirus. Using ozone gas to treat herniated disks and other spinal ailments is, at best, a “controversial” proposal that scientists have not accepted as mainstream.
— VTV CANAL 8 (@VTVcanal8) January 17, 2021
Maduro went on to claim ingesting ozone had a “95 percent effectiveness rate” in helping Chinese coronavirus patients record, without citing the source for that number. He alleged ozone functions as a “pursuer” of coronavirus in the body and kills the virus from the inside, omitting that the gas also harms the human body.
Maduro first began discussing ozone therapy late last year, initially promoting “rectal ozone therapy” specifically as a coronavirus cure alongside a product he described as “miracle droplets” laced with the magic powers of a Venezuelan saint.
“You put some droplets under your tongue every four hours; it is yielding miraculous results,” Maduro explained at the time. “The little miracle droplets go directly, so you can take them with faith.”
He also described rectal ozone therapy as “out of sight.”
The American FDA has repeatedly warned Americans not to consume ozone for any reason.
“Ozone is a toxic gas with no known useful medical application in specific, adjunctive, or preventive therapy,” FDA regulations warn. “In order for ozone to be effective as a germicide, it must be present in a concentration far greater than that which can be safely tolerated by man and animals.”
The FDA has specifically warned against the use of ozone against Chinese coronavirus. In April, the Justice Department sued a Texas “wellness” company for attempting to promote anti-coronavirus ozone therapy, noting the practice is harmful. The lawsuit resulted in a court banning the company’s advertisements touting ozone as the “only prevention” for coronavirus.
The New York Times noted in December the Chinese coronavirus pandemic is not the first to give toxic ozone popularity as an alleged cure. During the 1918 Spanish flu pandemic, American companies sold ozone products to allegedly help fight the influenza virus, despite its lack of documented effectiveness.
Venezuela has documented 119,803 cases of Chinese coronavirus as of Monday and only 1,106 deaths, raising questions globally regarding the legitimacy of the Maduro regime’s statistics. The numbers are significantly lower than the number of cases documented in neighboring free states, such as Colombia (1.9 million cases, 48,631 deaths), Peru (1 million cases, 38,000 deaths), and Brazil (8.5 million cases, 210,000 deaths).
A poll published in October found that the vast majority of Venezuelans living with people diagnosed with coronavirus, 87 percent of respondents, said that their housemate did not receive a PCR test, the most accurate way to confirm the presence of the virus — suggesting the majority of coronavirus cases have not been confirmed and, thus, not documented.
Maduro has rejected accusations of manipulations of numbers, or of poor testing, and has claimed instead the numbers are the product of his bizarre lockdown policy known as “7+7,” which requires Venezuelans to endure two weeks of strict lockdowns followed by two weeks of the total lifting of limitations on movement, a policy no other country has publicly adopted.