Two French doctors have been accused of racism for comments they made regarding testing a COVID-19 vaccine in Africa.
Camille Locht, head of research at the Inserm health research group, suggested testing a tuberculosis vaccine to see if it could also treat COVID-19. Jean-Paul Mira, the head of intensive care at Cochin hospital in Paris, responded to Locht saying that “If I can be provocative, shouldn’t we be doing this study in Africa, where there are no masks, no treatments, no resuscitation?” He added that “A bit like as it is done elsewhere for some studies on Aids. In prostitutes, we try things because we know that they are highly exposed and that they do not protect themselves.”
“You are right” responded Dr. Locht. He added that “We are in the process of thinking about a study in parallel in Africa.”
People have been outraged at the comments the two doctors made, leading to the creation of the #AfricansAreNotLabRats hashtag trending on Twitter.
African soccer players Didier Drogba and Samuel Eto’o took to social media to voice their disgust with the doctors.
Other people also took to social media to voice their disgust with the doctor’s comments.