A poison control center in Virginia issued a statement in response to reports that members of the public were drinking chlorine bleach in attempts to prevent the coronavirus.
The Blue Ridge Poison Center in Charlottesville sent out a letter, advising people that drinking bleach would not stop them from getting COVID-19, the disease that is caused by coronavirus, CBS affiliate WCAV reported.
“There is a lot of confusing, incomplete, and just plain inaccurate information circulating about how to prevent the COVID-19 virus (‘coronavirus’) from spreading,” it said. “Some advice measures simply won’t help, and some could be downright dangerous.”
According to the poison control center, drinking bleach won’t prevent COVID-19 infections and could cause serious harm.
A medical toxicology fellow interviewed by WCAV noted that drinking bleach is likely to cause vomiting.
“Bleach is a caustic agent, which means it can burn,” Jennifer Ross said.
“It’s used to kill germs, so if you drink it, it can burn your mouth, it can burn your throat, it can burn your stomach as well. One of the most common signs we see is vomiting.”
It isn’t the first time the public has been misinformed about the supposed curative properties of bleach.
In August, a group calling itself “The Genesis II Church of Health and Healing” was set to gather in upstate New York touting a “miracle mineral solution,” or MMS, to cure cancer.
The “cure” turned out to be bleach.