- The Washington Times - Wednesday, May 20, 2020

President Trump may have the last laugh when it comes to the efficacy of ultraviolet light in killing the coronavirus pandemic.

The commander in chief’s critics laughed and mocked his April ruminations on the potential of UV light to combat the contagion. New York City transit officials announced on Tuesday, however, that subway cars and buses will get blasted by UV light in a pilot program that has shown promise.

Patrick Foye, chairman and CEO of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, said at a news conference on the program that, “to our knowledge, this is the first reported test of its kind, period.” 

“The results have been very encouraging,” said David Brenner, director of the Center for Radiological Research at Columbia University, ABC News reported.

Mr. Trump told reporters on April 23 that he was intrigued by the potential of UV light solutions to the virus and hoped that applications could be used on infected patients. 

“Supposing we hit the body with a tremendous — whether it’s ultraviolet or just very powerful light — and I think you said that that hasn’t been checked, but you’re going to test it,” Mr. Trump said. “And then I said, supposing you brought the light inside the body, which you can do either through the skin or in some other way, and I think you said you’re going to test that too. It sounds interesting.”

New York’s pilot program will cost $1 million for 150 UV lamps supplied by a startup company called Puro.

“As scientists, we’re going to repeat the studies, we’re going to write them up for peer review,” Mr. Brenner added. “But it’s certainly looking absolutely that UV light is very efficient for killing this virus.”

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