WHO says remdesivir and three other drugs have no effect on COVID-19 patients


October 17, 2020


A bottle containing the drug remdesivir is held by a health worker at the Institute of Infectology of Kenezy Gyula Teaching Hospital of the University of Debrecen in Debrecen, Hungary, on Thursday. | MTI / VIA AP




GENEVA – The World Health Organization has said that trial results show remdesivir and three other drugs administered to people infected with the novel coronavirus “have little or no effect” in terms of lowering the morality rate.

“Interim results from the Solidarity Therapeutics Trial, coordinated by the World Health Organization, indicate that remdesivir, hydroxychloroquine, lopinavir/ritonavir and interferon regimens appeared to have little or no effect on 28-day mortality or the in-hospital course of COVID-19 among hospitalized patients,” the world health body said Thursday in a press release.

According to the WHO, the study, based on results from over 11,000 people randomly selected at 405 hospitals in more than 30 countries, “looked at the effects of these treatments on overall mortality, initiation of ventilation, and duration of hospital stay in hospitalized patients.”

All four of these drugs were developed for treating diseases other than COVID-19, the contagious illness caused by the coronavirus. The Japanese government has approved the use of remdesivir as a COVID-19 treatment.

U.S. President Donald Trump also underwent a five-day course of remdesivir when he was hospitalized after testing positive for the coronavirus earlier this month.

“Other uses of the drugs, for example in treatment of patients in the community or for prevention, would have to be examined using different trials,” the WHO release added.


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