FDA Permits Use of Anti-Malarial Drugs Hydroxychloroquine and Chloroquine for Emergency Treatment of COVID-19


Recently, the US FDA has issued emergency authorization for COVID-19 treatments using hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine. Reportedly, President Donald Trump has touted the drugs that can treat COVID-19 despite inadequate clinical proof revealing their efficiency. On the other hand, the US HHS (Department of Health and Human Services) has announced it has accepted thirty million vials of hydroxychloroquine sulfate from Sandoz. It is the generics and biosimilars section of Novartis and has donated these millions of doses to assist combating coronavirus. Apart from this, Bayer Pharmaceuticals has donated one million vials of chloroquine phosphate for probable use in curing patients admitted with coronavirus. Another aim behind the massive donation effort is to enable researchers to use the drug for trials.

The pharmaceuticals have donated the medicines to the SNS (Strategic National Stockpile). As per the statement from HHS, the drugs will be available for distribution. Even more, doctors can prescribe those medications to adults and teens hospitalized because of COVID-19. So far, no clinical trials or researches have revealed the effectiveness of these medicines. The move of adopting and donating the drugs arrives as positive outcomes of using the anti-malarial medications continue to rise. So far, the agency is fast-tracking a procedure that commonly takes years to reveal results. But the FDA is conducting clinical studies in New York, an epicenter of the virus.

HHS noted federal agencies had issued emergency approval because the probable benefits of the medicines have higher precedence than the risks. Still, subjective trials are essential to offer scientific proof that these medications are efficient. Notably, the CDC has warned against consuming non-pharmaceutical chloroquine phosphate without a doctor’s prescription. Also, it has recommended patients to take the medication under the administration of healthcare provider. The agency has noted that improper use of the drug can result in severe health implications and even death.