COVID-19: WHO Suspends Trial Of Chloroquine

 COVID-19: WHO Suspends Trial Of Chloroquine

The World Health Organisation (WHO) said on Monday that it had “temporarily” suspended clinical trials of hydroxychloro­quine as a potential treatment for COVID-19 being carried out across a range of countries as a precautionary measure.

The decision came after the publication last week of a study in the Lancet in­dicating that using the drug on COVID-19 patients could increase their likelihood of dying, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Direc­tor-General, told a virtual press conference.

He added that the WHO-backed trials had been “sus­pended while the safety is revieweD

The United Nations (UN) health body tweeted on its handle, @WHO: “The review will consider data collected so far in the Solidarity Tri­al and, in particular robust randomized available data, to adequately evaluate the potential benefits and harms from this drug.

“The Executive Group has implemented a temporary pause of the hydroxychlo­roquine arm within the Sol­idarity Trial, while the data is reviewed by the Data Safety Monitoring Board.”

“The other arms of the trial are continuing,” Tedros said.

He continued: “This con­cern relates to the use of hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine in COVID-19. I wish to reiterate that these drugs are accepted as gener­ally safe for use in patients with autoimmune diseases or malaria.”

Hydroxychloroquine, which Trump has repeated­ly touted as a potential game-changer in fighting the coro­navirus, is an anti-malarial drug that’s also used by doc­tors to treat rheumatoid ar­thritis and lupus.

Numerous clinical trials are looking to see if it is effec­tive in fighting COVID-19, but it is not a proven treatment.

Despite the lack of sci­entific evidence presenting hydroxychloroquine as a vi­able coronavirus treatment option, Trump told report­ers earlier this month that he had been taking the drug to avoid contracting the dis­ease.

“I happen to be taking it,” Trump said during a round­table event at the White House.

“A lot of good things have come out. You’d be surprised at how many people are tak­ing it, especially the front-line workers.

“Before you catch it. The front-line workers, many, many are taking it.”

The White House declined to comment. The Department of Health and Human Ser­vices did not immediately respond to a request for com­ment from the media.”

Ayomide Oyewole

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