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Studies find potentially effective medicine for coronavirus treatment and prevention that's readily available


But it's not FDA-approved for that use

Yegor Aleyev\TASS via Getty Images

Three separate medical studies have found a potentially effective treatment for the coronavirus that could also be useful in preventing infections in some cases.

The coronavirus, known as COVID-19, is viewed as a particularly potent threat because there is currently no medical treatment and no preventative vaccine, so any hope of slowing down the spread and death rate could be significant.

What's the treatment? Multiple studies showed that the use of chloroquine to treat the coronavirus can lead to faster recovery and shorter hospital stays for patients.

Chloroquine is normally used as an anti-malarial drug, used for the prevention and/or treatment of malaria. It's available in the United States by prescription, and can be safely taken by men and women of all ages, including pregnant women.

Doctors in China and South Korea have observed that the coronavirus patients treated with chloroquine show reduced fever and better lung CT images, and so far research has not found any negative effects of the treatment.

From a study done in consultation with Stanford University School of Medicine, UAB School of Medicine, and the National Academy of Sciences:

According to South Korean and China human treatment guidelines, chloroquine is effective in treating COVID-19. Given chloroquine's human safety profile and existence, it can be implemented today in the U.S., Europe and the rest of the world. Medical doctors may be reluctant to prescribe chloroquine to treat COVID-19 since it is not FDA approved for this use. The United States of America and other countries should immediately authorize and indemnify medical doctors for prescribing chloroquine to treat COVID-19. We must explore whether chloroquine can safely serve as a preventative measure prior to infection of COVID-19 to stop further spread of this highly contagious virus.

UK catching on? The study noted that Europe may be aware of the potential use of chloroquine to treat coronavirus, shown by a recent move by the United Kingdom to add chloroquine to a list of medicines that can't be exported.

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