Steve Sisolak, Nevada governor, bans malaria drugs for coronavirus patients

Steve Sisolak, Nevada governor, bans malaria drugs for coronavirus patients

In Arizona, one man died and his wife landed in critical condition after the pair reportedly drank fish tank cleaner ingredient chloroquine phosphate, allegedly believing that they were ingesting the same anti-malarial medication now being touted by officials as a possible COVID-19 treatment.

According to NBC, the two mistook the substance used to treat parasites in fish with hydroxychloroquine, a drug used to treat malaria, lupus and rheumatoid arthritis, among other diseases, which is being tested to combat Covid-19.

The chloroquine the couple ingested is actually chloroquine phosphate that's used to treat aquariums.

Within 30 minutes of ingestion, the couple experienced immediate effects requiring admittance to a nearby Banner Health Hospital, according to Banner Health officials. "We saw Trump on TV - every channel - and all of his buddies saying that this was safe", she told NBC. The woman, who asked not to be named, said she was familiar with the chemical because she used it to treat her koi fish.

Right after that press briefing, the FDA issued a statement clarifying that although the drugs are under investigation for treating COVID-19, they should not be used for that objective until they've been thoroughly tested in clinical trials. "This is a daily medication that these people absolutely need", said Erin Fox, who's with the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists.

Interest in chloroquine as a treatment for coronaviruses was initially reignited by a letter from Chinese researchers to the BioScience Trends journal this year that suggested it had "potent efficacy" in treating pneumonia caused by Covid-19, but no data on studies has yet been shared with the World Health Organization.

Neither drug is approved by the FDA to treat the coronavirus, but Trump has referred to the drugs as game-changers in containing the outbreak.

The FDA chief clarified that the drug still needs to be tested as a potential treatment, but Trump barreled right over the expert's warning and continued to tout the drug as a cure.

All of them said they didn't have the drug in stock and, in fact, said it was back-ordered.

Last week Mr Trump said chloroquine "may work, may not work" but that he "felt good" about it and the U.S. government has ordered "millions of units" of the drug.

A new study published this month in the journal Bioscience Trends found that chloroquine phosphate has produced positive results in treating COVID-19-associated pneumonia. "On March 20, the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control tweeted: "@WHO has NOT approved the use of chloroquine for #COVID19 management.Scientists are working hard to confirm the safety of several drugs for this disease.

"We are strongly urging the medical community to not prescribe this medication to any non-hospitalised patients".

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