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Expert questions push for use of drug HCQ in COVID treatment

 

BY ALEXANDRIA SAN JUAN

 

 

A medical expert from OCTA Research Team questioned on Friday the suggestion made by a group of doctors and concerned citizens to use anti-viral drug hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) as prophylaxis to prevent coronavirus disease (COVID-19) infection.

Citing studies from different health journals and the World Health Organization (WHO), Dr. Michael Tee said that there is no evidence, so far, that the HCQ is safe or effective for patients experiencing symptoms of the respiratory disease.

“Hindi natin alam kung pwedeng ibigay iyan as prophylaxis kasi walang ebidensya. On whether you can use it for treatment, mabibigay mo ba iyan kung nagkasakit na ang pasyente? Dahil mayroong mga ebidensya na nagsasabing hindi ito effective,” Tee clarified in an interview.

However, Tee said that the hydroxychloroquine is safe but only for patients who actually need it for treatment such as those who have malaria, lupus, or rheumatoid arthritis.

In a unity statement earlier issued by the Concerned Doctors and Citizens of the Philippines (CDCph), it recommended the use of HCQ as an early treatment against the disease, adding that it is safe if given in correct dosage upon consultation with doctors.

The WHO has suspended twice the clinical trial of the HCQ to treat COVID-19 patients due to safety concerns and following interim trial results that it “produce little or no reduction in the mortality of hospitalized COVID-19 patients when compared to standard of care.”

Tee, who is a professor at the University of the Philippines College of Medicine, said giving HCQ as treatment for COVID-19 patients, along with other medicinal drugs, might only result in complications.

As vaccine trials still ongoing around the world, Tee urged the public to strictly observe safety and health protocols such as maintaining physical distancing and proper wearing of face mask and face shield to further curb the transmission of the virus. (Alexandria San Juan)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“We are improving as a society in our response [against the virus]. Mas marami na ngayon ang gumagamit ng face mask, halos lahat na tayo. Mas marami na rin ang mga Pilipino na naniniwalang dapat na nating seryosohin ang pandemic na ito,” he added.

 

(More and more people are now using face masks, almost all of us. More and more Filipinos believe that we should take this pandemic seriously.)#

 

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