The United States is speeding up the treatment of the anti-malaria drug chloroquine for the new coronavirus, President Donald Trump said on Thursday.
“We’re going to be able to make this drug available almost immediately, and that’s where the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) has been so great,” Trump told reporters.
“They went through the approval process – it was approved. They took it from very many months to immediate. So we’re going to be able to make this drug available by prescription.”
But FDA commissioner Stephen Hahn later said that, although the drug has not yet been officially approved for screening for the virus, its access is being expanded so that authorities can collect more data.
This is called “compassionate use”.
Synthetic form of quinine
“If there is an investigational drug that is potentially available, a doctor could request that this drug be used in a patient. We have criteria for that and very quick approval for it,” said Hahn.
“For example, many Americans have read studies and heard media reports about this drug, chloroquine, which is an antimalarial drug.”
“It has already been approved, as the president said, for the treatment of malaria and arthritis.”
“It is a drug that the President has asked us to take a closer look at, to see if an expanded use approach could be taken to see if it benefits patients.”
Chloroquine is a synthetic form of quinine, which has been used to treat malaria since the 1940s.
The drug has recently been used to treat patients with coronaviruses in China and France, where some researchers have said it is very promising, although scientists agree that only more tests would determine if it really works and s ‘He is sure.