Many treatments for Covid-19 under clinical trial, none approved yet: WHO

Topics Coronavirus | WHO | Lockdown

WHO said coronavirus may become another just another virus in the world community like HIV infection, and may never go away
The World Health Organization (WHO) said that a number of treatments are under clinical trials for the treatment of coronavirus (Covid-19), but none of those were yet approved.

"There are hundreds of clinical trials that are underway, and the reason we need to wait for the results of these studies is because they are evaluating how these medicines, how these drugs work, in terms of either preventing infection, preventing someone from progressing to severe disease, preventing death and how safe they are, do they have any side effects," Maria Van Kerkhove, technical lead for the WHO's Health Emergencies Program, said on Friday in a press conference in Geneva.

"Right now, WHO has launched the 'Solidarity Trial' which is a clinical trial focusing on some drugs, some therapeutics, to look at whether or not these are safe and effective for Covid-19. There are more than 2,500 patients enrolled in this multi-site clinical trial," she said.

"And it will take some time before we have full answers to which treatments work, but right now we don't have any approved treatments for Covid-19." she added.

Michael Ryan, executive director of the WHO Health Emergencies Program, stressed the importance of proper process to ensure safety.

"And there's a very very well tested process of doing this, so it's really important that we encourage innovation, we encourage people to be looking for solutions, but then as those solutions potentially become available, we need to put them through the proper process in the interest of safety, in the interest of efficacy and in order to make sure that we first do no harm," he said.

Earlier this week, senior WHO official, Michael J Ryan said the coronavirus may become another just another virus in the world community like HIV infection, and may never go away.

"This virus just may become another endemic virus in our communities and this virus may never go away. HIV has not gone away," Dr Ryan, executive director of the WHO health emergencies program was quoted as saying by CNN.

"I am not comparing the two diseases but I think it is important that we are realistic. I do not think anyone can predict when or if this disease will disappear," Ryan added.

He also said lifting coronavirus restrictions while the case count is still high could lead to the renewed massive transmission of the virus and another possible lockdown.

"If you can get the day-to-day number to the lowest possible level and get as much virus out of the community as possible, then when you open, you will tend to have less transmission or much less risk. If you reopen in the presence of a high degree of virus transmission, then that transmission may accelerate," Ryan was quoted as saying by Sputnik.

Over the issue of attacks on ethnic minorities in certain countries over Covid-19, Ryan said that coronavirus is bringing the "best in us and also some of the worst in us." On the issue of vaccine, he added, "we may have a shot at eliminating this virus but that vaccine will have to be available, it will have to be highly effective, it will have to be made available to everyone and we'll have to use it."

According to the WHO, so far, a total of 4,170,424 number of confirmed cases of Covid-19 have been reported including 287,399 fatalities. WHO had declared coronavirus a pandemic on March 11, and it has been giving daily situation report on the infection since January 21.

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