A substantial new study has found that the anti-malaria drug hydroxychloroquine helped patients survive COVID-19. In fact, the study from the Henry Ford Health System in Michigan said the drug “significantly” cut the death rate of patients.
“Treatment with hydroxychloroquine cut the death rate significantly in sick patients hospitalized with COVID-19 – and without heart-related side-effects,” the health organization reports.
Their analysis of 2,500 COVID-19 patients found the drug can be effective if patients received it early in their treatment.
President Trump had touted the drug early on as a possible experimental treatment for virus patients, but then studies found conflicting results about its effectiveness and the news media hammered him on it. One of the earlier negative studies was later retracted.
Scientists from the Henry Ford Health System explained why their study was successful.
“The findings have been highly analyzed and peer-reviewed,” said Dr. Marcus Zervos, division head of Infectious Disease for Henry Ford Health System, who co-authored the study with Henry Ford epidemiologist Dr. Samia Arshad. “We attribute our findings that differ from other studies to early treatment, and part of a combination of interventions that were done in supportive care of patients, including careful cardiac monitoring. Our dosing also differed from other studies not showing a benefit of the drug. And other studies are either not peer-reviewed, have limited numbers of patients, different patient populations or other differences from our patients.”