Hydroxychloroquine prescriptions surged 2,000% in March when Trump touted malaria drug - (CNBC via NewsPoints Desk)

  • According to a new study published in JAMA, US prescriptions for hydroxychloroquine surged nearly 2000% in March when President Donald Trump first touted the drug as a potential treatment for COVID-19, reported CNBC.

  • The study found that during the week of March 15 to March 21, there were 45,858 short-term prescription fills for hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine, compared to 2208 in 2019.

  • Investigators said 28-to-60 day and 61-plus day prescriptions generally used by people with chronic conditions like lupus climbed 179% and 182%, respectively, during that week.

  • Overall, there were 483,425 excess prescriptions fills of hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine in the 10 weeks from February 16 to April 25 examined by the study, the authors said.

  • The findings come shortly after a study published in The Lancet suggested that hospitalized COVID-19 patients treated with hydroxychloroquine were at higher risk of death than those who did not take it.

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