RALEIGH – As much as there’s cause for heightened concern and vigilance over COVID-19 over the next several weeks, there is good news to be shared with respect to progress in realizing effective treatments for the coronavirus epidemic. A medicine used in other treatments has shown signs of effective treatment and mitigation of COVID-19 and a New Jersey drugmaker Amneal Pharmaceuticals that produces the medicine called hydroxychloroquine to North Carolina hospitals.
While scientists are advancing toward clinical trials at breakneck speed after having profiled an incredible amount of information about the virus genetics faster than ever before, vaccine arrival is still months at earliest. Therefore, treatments, especially those sourced from already established drug production capabilities, are the next best option.
From the Charlotte Observer:
“Six hundred thousand doses of a drug used to treat COVID-19 patients could be in North Carolina hospitals this weekend after a whirlwind effort by a pharmaceutical maker, state officials and two men from north Mecklenburg County.
This week the New Jersey-based Amneal Pharmaceuticals donated the drug hydroxychloroquine to the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services. […]
Hydroxychloroquine is an anti-malarial drug that some, including President Donald Trump, have touted as a treatment for COVID-19, the disease caused by the new coronavirus. Around 1,600 North Carolinians have contracted the disease, according to the Department of Health and Human Services. As of late Wednesday, 12 people have died.
The drug is used to treat lupus and rheumatoid arthritis, both auto-immune disorders. Last weekend the federal Food and Drug Administration issued an “emergency use authorization” to use the drug in treatment of COVID-19, though that does not mean the drug is clinically effective for the disease.
On Tuesday the FDA listed hydroxychloroquine as “currently in shortage.”
The 600,000 doses represents about $500,000 worth of the product. If the drug is as effective as hoped, and early indications are that it is making a difference, drugmakers like Amneal and others that can produce it at volume will be a boon for communities and medical providers across the state.
We must recommend NOT trying to recreate the drug names with stuff you find around the house; a couple in Arizona poisoned themselves drinking a coy pond cleaner with a similar name.
Hopefully more, doctor-approved treatments will be discovered among medical science’s existing portfolio of concoctions that makes production and distribution as expeditious as possible. Read more about the drug donation here.