What we can learn from COVID-19 outbreak in Iran about the importance of alcohol use education

Authors: Mohammadreza Shalbafan and Noushin Khademoreza

On February 19th, the first Iranian case of the COVID-19 was officially reported by Iranian government and his death was announced in less than 24-hours (1).Following this announcement, the Iranian populace quickly became fearful of the impending epidemic and –as has been seen in other countries – began searching for protective interventions (2). Misinformation spread quickly throughout Iran. Some traditional therapists advised consumption of several types of nutrition such as nuts, tropical fruits and peppers, called “hot-tempered foods”. Some religious healers advised people to pray and use a special traditional medication. An incorrect recommendation that quickly gained traction in Iran was that the ingestion of alcoholic beverages could eradicate the virus. As is typically the case, the source of this guidance is unknown, although it was presumably based upon the known effectiveness of alcohol-based sanitizers against COVID-19 on external surfaces. Within a short time, it was publicized that over 100 people Iran had died from drinking contaminated alcoholic beverages in an effort to protect themselves against COVID19 (3). As of March 27, 2020, almost 300 people had died and 1000 sickened (4). Almost all cases demonstrated evidence of methanol intoxication, one of the most dangerous contaminants of home-made alcohol.

تاریخ انتشار اولیه: ۱ اردیبهشت ۱۳۹۹
تاریخ رصد: ۱۱ شهریور ۱۳۹۹

 

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