Kaiser Permanente will temporarily stop filling prescriptions for hydroxychloroquine for some patients in order to preserve the drug for “severely sick patients,” including those who have contracted the novel coronavirus (COVID-19).
Hydroxychloroquine, which is sold under the brand name Plaquenil, is an anti-malaria drug that is also used to treat lupus. Over the weekend, it was touted as a possible treatment for COVID-19 by Donald Trump.
“HYDROXYCHLOROQUINE & AZITHROMYCIN, taken together, have a real chance to be one of the biggest game changers in the history of medicine,” Trump tweeted on Saturday — quickly creating a high demand for hydroxychloroquine and an ensuing shortage.
The regional medical director of Quality and Clinical Analysis at Kaiser Permanente, Southern California, Nancy Gin, told BuzzFeed News that there is a “real possibility” of running out of the drug if steps are not made to “mitigate the shortage.”
“As we face the real possibility of running out of the drug for everybody if we don’t take steps to mitigate the shortage, Kaiser Permanente, like other health care organizations across the country, has had to take steps to control the outflow of the medication to ensure access to severely sick patients, including both COVID-19 and those with …read more