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On March 28, 2020, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued an emergency use authorization (EUA) for the use of hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine for certain hospitalized patients diagnosed with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).1 Hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine have long been approved for the prophylaxis and treatment of malaria, with the former also used in the treatment of systemic lupus erythematosus and rheumatoid arthritis. Although these drugs appear to inhibit coronavirus replication in vitro, at the time of the EUA, there was no reliable clinical evidence to support the use of these drugs to treat COVID-19 in patients.
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Corresponding Author: Aaron S. Kesselheim, MD, JD, MPH, Program on Regulation, Therapeutics, and Law (PORTAL), Division of Pharmacoepidemiology and Pharmacoeconomics, Department of Medicine, Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School, 1620 Tremont St, Ste 3030, Boston, MA 02120 (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Published Online: May 19, 2020. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2020.2402
Conflict of Interest Disclosures: Dr Kesselheim reported grants from Arnold Ventures and from the Harvard–MIT Center for Regulatory Science. No other disclosures were reported.
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