Oklahoma gets $2.6 million refund for its Hydroxychloroquine purchase
Andrew Trunsky, DCNF
Oklahoma will receive a $2.6 million refund for its bulk purchase of Hydroxychloroquine, an anti-malarial drug that former President Donald Trump touted as an effective treatment for COVID-19.
The state will be reimbursed in full once it returns its supply, Oklahoma Attorney General Mike Hunter said in a press release Friday. Trump continuously promoted the drug throughout the first months of the pandemic, even as some health officials warned against taking it due to the risk of severe side effects.
The Oklahoma State Department of Health purchased 1.2 million pills of the drug in April 2020, according to the Associated Press.
“[FFF Enterprises] recognized we were in competition with every other state in the nation to get whatever we could to protect Oklahomans,” Hunter said in the release. “When it was determined the drug wasn’t effective in combatting the virus, they did the right thing by refunding our money.”
The Food and Drug Administration authorized the drug for emergency use in March 2020, but revoked it that June after it concluded that it was ineffective in fighting the virus.
Oklahoma announced in January that it would try and get a refund for its stockpile. The state has recorded nearly 450,000 coronavirus cases and over 8,200 deaths, according to a Johns Hopkins University database.