Due to the deadly coronavirus pandemic, the whole world is now suffering from anxiety. Under such circumstances, internet and social media have been inundated with several rumours and fake remedies across the world. Health workers from every corner of the world are advising people to not rely on coronavirus hoaxes. But fake remedies on how to treat coronavirus / COVID-19 has snatched more than 700 lives in Iran. More than 700 Iranians have accidentally died after drinking toxic alcohol in the false belief that it can keep the deadly coronavirus at bay.
The National Coroner’s Authority (NCA) said that alcohol poisonings, after false reports that strong alcohol could positively prevent COVID-19, killed almost 728 Iranians between February 20 and April 7. Last year there were only 66 deaths from toxic methanol ingesting, according to the report. A recent report released by the Iranian Government earlier in April explained methanol poisoning has skyrocketed by more than 10 times in Iran in the last year, amid the novel coronavirus epidemic.
Kianoush Jahanpour, Iranian health ministry spokesman, said that almost 525 people had died and over 5,000 people had been toxicated from methanol alcohol, adding that some 90 people have lost their eyesight or are suffering from blindness from the alcohol poisoning. Hossein Hassanian, an adviser to the Health Ministry, explained to a news agency that the difference in death tallies was because some 200 alcohol poisoning victims had died outside of hospital.
Iran is facing one of the worst coronavirus outbreaks in the Middle East region with 5,957 deaths and more than 93,000 confirmed cases.
According to the rules imposed by the Iranian Government, manufacturers of toxic methanol are required to mix an artificial color to their products so that a common people can differentiate it from ethanol. Ethanol is also a kind of alcohol widely used in alcoholic drinks, though its production has been banned in Iran since 1979, as consumption of alcohol is strictly prohibited under Islamic law. But religious minorities can drink in private.
If you are unaware about this, methanol is an industrial alcohol used in pesticide, fuel and industrial purposes. It cannot be smelled or tasted in drinks. Methanol poisoning causes delayed organ and brain damage in human body. Symptoms are associated with methanol poisoning include nausea, chest pain, hyperventilation, blindness and even coma.