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Hydroxychloroquine are given to local Covid-19 patients

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — Local doctors are giving the anti-malarial drug Hydroxychloroquine as a possible treatment for COVID-19. But, they still say more research is needed.

An infectious disease physician at Rochester General Hospital said they gave the drug to a select group to treat severe cases of coronavirus. The doctor wouldn’t release the number of people in this group, but did say 50% of the group have had success and the only two people died in that group. 

Hydroxychloroquine is the same drug President Donald Trump has been promoting at his briefings, despite a lack of clinical evidence that it is an effective treatment against coronavirus in humans. 

“This is a completely new infection. A completely new virus. It is behaving differently from other viruses that it is related to. So, as information comes out from other hospitals and other countries who have been dealing with this pandemic. What we get together as a group and decide, is this information going to inform us on how to treat our patients better and strive for better outcomes,” said Dr. Rosemary Laguio-Vila, Chief of Infectious Disease at Rochester General Hospital.

Doctor Laguio-Vila said supportive care is one of the best ways to treat non-serious cases of COVID-19. The Food and Drug Administration has not approved Hydroxychloroquine to treat Coronavirus.

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