Health Ministry Issues Revised Guidelines on Use of Hydroxychloroquine as Preventive Medication in Treatment of COVID-19; Here Are Details of Advisory

Team Latestly

New Delhi May 23: The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on Saturday issued a revised advisory on the use of hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) as a preventive medication in the treatment of COVID-19. The Joint Monitoring Group under the Chairmanship of Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS) reviewed the prophylactic use of hydroxychloroquine in the context of expanding it to healthcare and other front line workers deployed in non-COVID and COVID areas, respectively. Hydroxychloroquine a 'Line of Defence' Against Coronavirus, Says Donald Trump Defending The Drug.

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The government’s revised advisory recommended the use of hydroxychloroquine as a preventive medication for asymptomatic healthcare workers working in non-COVID-19 hospitals, frontline staff on surveillance duty in containment zones and paramilitary/police personnel involved in coronavirus infection-related activities The advisory reiterated that the intake of above medicine should not instil a sense of false security. Here is the complete advisory regarding the use of hydroxychloroquine

Categories For Which Prophylactic use of HCQ is Recommended:

  • All asymptomatic healthcare workers involved in containment and treatment of COVID19 and asymptomatic healthcare workers working in non-COVID hospitals/non-COVID areas of COVID hospitals/blocks.
  • Asymptomatic frontline workers, such as surveillance workers deployed in containment zones and paramilitary/police personnel involved in COVID-19 related activities.
  • Asymptomatic household contacts of laboratory-confirmed cases.

Here Are The Cases in Which The Drug cannot Be Recommended:

  • The drug is contraindicated in persons with a known case of:  Retinopathy, Hypersensitivity to HCQ or 4-aminoquinoline compounds, G6PD deficiency and pre-existing cardiomyopathy and cardiac rhythm disorders
  • The drug is not recommended for prophylaxis in children under 15 years of age and in pregnancy and lactation.

Tweet by Ministry of Information And Broadcasting:

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As was mentioned in the earlier advisory, the drug against the infection is also recommended for all asymptomatic healthcare workers involved in containment and treatment of COVID-19 and household contacts of laboratory confirmed cases. According to the revised advisory, "at NIV, Pune, the report of the in-vitro testing of HCQ for antiviral efficacy showed reduction of infectivity and log reduction in viral RNA copy of SARs-CoV2". "The drug is contraindicated in persons with known case of retinopathy, hypersensitivity to HCQ and cardiac rhythm disorders," it said. The drug has to be given under strict medical supervision with an informed consent, said The health ministry in its advisory.

The data on assessment of HCQ prophylaxis among 1,323 healthcare workers indicated mild adverse effects such as nausea (8.9 per cent), abdominal pain (7.3 per cent), vomiting (1.5 per cent), hypoglycemia (1.7 per cent) and cardio-vascular effects (1.9 per cent), the advisory said. However, as per the data from the Pharma covigilance programme of India, there have been 214 reported instances of adverse drug reactions associated with prophylactic HCQ use, it said.