Grind for March 9th
“Never judge a book by its cover.” – Unknown
FDA Gives Emergency Authorization of Hydroxychloroquine Use
The Food And Drug Administration (FDA) issued an emergency authorization Sunday for hydroxychloroquine, a drug already used to treat malaria and other ailments, which has shown anecdotal efficacy against coronavirus.
The use of the drug – often paired with azithromycin – has not yet been proven in clinical trials to be effective against the disease. However, given reported success in a growing number of small, non-randomized studies; as well as testimonials from doctors and patients about the use of the “off-label” drug regimen, doctors are said to be prescribing the treatment to patients who are severely ill. Anecdotally, many doctors are taking it prophylactically.
The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued a statement on Sunday:
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) to BARDA to allow hydroxychloroquine sulfate and chloroquine phosphate products donated to the Strategic National Stockpile (SNS) to be distributed and prescribed by doctors to hospitalized teen and adult patients with COVID-19, as appropriate, when a clinical trial is not available or feasible.
HHS also noted that it had “accepted 30 million doses of hydroxychloroquine sulfate donated by Sandoz, the Novartis generics and biosimilars division, and one million doses of chloroquine phosphate donated by Bayer Pharmaceuticals, for possible use in treating patients hospitalized with COVID-19 or for use in clinical trials.” Read more…
Italy Risks Losing Grip in South With Fear of Looting, Riots
As Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte fights to hold Italian society together through a crippling nationwide lockdown, the depressed south is turning into a powder keg.
Police have been deployed on the streets of Sicily’s capital, Palermo, amid reports gangs are using social media to plot attacks on stores. A bankrupt ferry company halted service to the island, including vital supplies of food and medicines. As the state creaks under the strain of the coronavirus pandemic, officials worry the mafia may be preparing to step in.
Preventing unrest in the so-called Mezzogiorno, the underdeveloped southern region that’s long lagged behind the wealthy north, has become the government’s top priority, according to Italian officials who asked not to be named discussing the administration’s strategy.
“We need to act fast, more than fast,” Palermo Mayor Leoluca Orlando told daily La Stampa. “Distress could turn into violence.”
As the lockdown enters its fourth week, Conte is set to extend containment measures that have shuttered all but essential businesses until April 18 at the earliest, the officials said. He’s also working on a new stimulus package for mid-April worth at least 30 billion euros ($33 billion), following initial measures worth 25 billion euros, they said.
Italy has the highest death toll from the virus, with more than 11,000 fatalities, and almost 102,000 confirmed cases, second only to the U.S. It reported the smallest number of new coronavirus infections in almost two weeks on Monday. Read more…
GOOD TO THE LAST DROP:
Did you know…Your lips don’t sweat.