What we know about 2 drugs at center of coronavirus (COVID-19) treatment research

Hydroxychloroquine, remdesivir in spotlight of COVID-19 battle

DETROIT – There are two drugs at the center of the battle against the coronavirus (COVID-19): hydroxychloroquine and remdesivir. Here’s what we know about the research into both.

In the past few days, there have been two studies published on the use of hydroxychloroquine.

Hydroxychloroquine studies

The first study was published in the New England Journal of Medicine and looked at more than 1,400 consecutive patients, comparing the rate of requiring a ventilator or dying between patients who received hydroxychloroquine and those who did not. They didn’t find any benefit to hydroxychloroquine.

The second study, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, also looked at more than 1,400 randomly selected COVID-19 patients and compared death rates for patients who received hydroxychloroquine alone or in combination with azithromycin to those who didn’t receive either drug.

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Researchers found similar results as the first study. Hydroxychloroquine alone or in combination with azithromycin didn’t show any improvement in risk of death.

It’s important to note both studies were observational, but they are adding to the increasing body of data that suggests hydroxychloroquine doesn’t offer any benefit in reducing the risk of death from the coronavirus.

Remdesivir shipment

There’s also an update on the distribution of remdesivir to patients in the state of Michigan.

On Saturday, state officials received 1,600 vials of the drug from the United States supply, enough for about 145 critically ill patients.

The state is prioritizing distribution to communities with the highest death rates and most patients with COVID-19 on ventilators.

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