Advisory on use of Hydroxychloroquine revised

On May 23, 2020, the Indian Council of Medical Research has revised its advisory on the use of HCQ (Hydroxychloroquine). Under the new advisory guidelines, the HCQ should be given only on the prescription of a registered medical practitioner.

Highlights

The advisory was issued after the Joint Monitoring Group held its meeting. The meeting was attended by ICMR, NCDC (National Centre for Disease Control), WHO (World Health Organization) and National Disaster Management Authority.

New Advisory

The new advisories included the following

  • The advisory has included three new categories to whom HCQ shall be prescribed as prophylactic treatment. They are as follows
    • Asymptomatic Health care workers working in non-COVID hospitals
    • Asymptomatic frontline workers that include workers employed in containment zones
    • Paramilitary and police personnel
  • The In-Vitro testing of HCQ has showed reduction of infectivity of COVID-19.
  • The drug is not prescribed for children under 15 years of age.
  • The use of HCQ on high risk population has also been revised.
  • The drug has to be provided only through prescription of a medical practitioner. Initially the use of the drug was allowed in asymptomatic patients without prescriptions.

Why were the advisories revised?

The data on assessment of using HCQ as prophylactic treatment says the following

  • Around 1,323 health care workers faced mild adverse effects
  • Some faced nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain.
  • Some other health care worker faced cardio-vascular effects as well.

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