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WHO suspends use of hydroxychloroquine for COVID-19

GENEVA, May 26, 2020: The Executive Group of WHO has suspended  the use of  pause of the hydroxychloroquine for COVID-19 while the safety data is reviewed by the Data Safety Monitoring Board.

On Friday, the Lancet published an observational study on hydroxycholoroquine and chloroquine and its effects on COVID-19 patients that have been hospitalised.

The authors reported that among patients receiving the drug, when used alone or with a macrolide, they estimated a higher mortality rate.

The Executive Group of the Solidarity Trial, representing 10 of the participating countries, met on Saturday and has agreed to review a comprehensive analysis and critical appraisal of all evidence available globally, said WHO Director General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.

The review will consider data collected so far in the Solidarity Trial and in particular robust randomised available data, to adequately evaluate the potential benefits and harms from this drug. The other arms of the trial are continuing.

“I wish to reiterate that these drugs are accepted as generally safe for use in patients with autoimmune diseases or malaria,” Dr Tedros pointed out.

"And we will continue to work night and day for solutions, science and solidarity,” he added.

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