Highlights from today’s Coronavirus Task Force and new FDA-approved drug
President Trump held a Coronavirus Task Force press conference on Thursday morning, where he discussed pressing developments with the Food and Drug Administration.
An antimalarial drug, called Chloroquine, has now been approved by the FDA to test as a Covid-19 treatment. The approval is part of a short-term treatment solution, as a vaccine will take 12 months to reach approval, according to Dr. Stephen Hahn, Commissioner of Food and Drug Administration.
Chloroquine has been used to treat malaria since 1944 as a way to prevent infection and for post-treatment use. According to ABC News, researchers in China have found that treating patients suffering from Covid-19-associated pneumonia could potentially shorten hospital stays and improve outcome. It has also been shown effective in treating the SARS virus, which is a close cousin to Covid-19.
Additionally, although test positives for Covid-19 have increased to 10-11%, according to Dr. Brix, Coronavirus Response Coordinator, many cases within the United States are coming from the same locations. Brix reported over 50% of all cases are coming from three states and 10 counties.
Dr. Hahn assured the press that “we have unbelievable innovators… and over 17,000 people at FDA” working day in and day out to fight Covid-19.
PHOTO CREDIT: AP PHOTO/EVAN VUCCI