Daily COVID-19 Briefing: March 24, 2020
United Church of Christ Wider Church Ministries – Humanitarian Development Team
Coronavirus (COVID-19) Daily Briefing
Barbara T. Baylor, MPH – Temporary Health Liaison
March 23, 2020 – Issue #2
Chloroquine and Hydroxychloroquine are not wonder drugs in the treatment for COVID-19
Chloroquine and Hydroxychloroquine are not proven drug choices in the treatments for COVID-19! Although these drugs have been used for treatment of malaria and certain inflammatory conditions, such as Lupus and Arthritis, there are no U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved drugs specifically for the treatment of patients with COVID-19.
Current management of the disease includes infection prevention and control measures and supportive care, including supplementary oxygen and mechanical ventilatory support when indicated. Source: Information for Clinicians on Therapeutic Options for COVID-19 Patients. The drugs have been approved by the FDA for clinical trials as possible COVID-19 treatments and nothing more!
Unfortunately, recent touts that the anti-malaria drug Chloroquine might be used as a treatment for COVID-19 have contributed to the death and hospitalization of a man and woman who ingested the wrong form of Chloroquine in hopes of preventing a COVID-19 infection.
The reason for this optimism stems from a new French study whose results were published in the International Journal of Antimicrobial Agents stating some evidence that Hydroxychloroquine, and Zithromax, an antibiotic, could be especially effective in treating COVID-19 and reducing the duration of the virus in patients. Source: French Study Finds Anti-Malarial and Antibiotic Combo Could Reduce COVID19 Duration
Because New York has become the epicenter of COVID-19, Gov. Andrew Cuomo has requested that drug trials to test COVID-19 treatments using Chloroquine, Hydroxychloroquine and Zithromax begin in the state today.
Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Commissioner, Dr. Stephen Hahn and Dr. Anthony Fauci, Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) and a member of the White House Coronavirus Task Force, both agree that large controlled clinical trials will be needed before definitive statements and conclusions can be made on the usefulness of these drugs and before making it available to COVID-19 patients.
It’s ok to be optimistic, but please, do not ingest any medicines that have not been prescribed by your personal physician or other health officials. Self-medication for any disease/infection can be dangerous and possibly deadly.