South Dakota to make hydroxychloroquine available despite FDA warnings
South Dakota health officials say they will still make a malaria drug widely available to treat COVID-19, even as the Food and Drug Administration warned against using it outside of hospital and research settings.
In an alert, regulators flagged reports of serious side effects and death among patients taking hydroxychloroquine and the related drug chloroquine. Gov. Kristi Noem has pushed for doctors to be able to use hydroxychloroquine.
She has encouraged a statewide clinical trial as well as made it available to COVID-19 patients if their doctor advises taking it. South Dakota received 1.2 million doses of the drug from the Strategic National Stockpile.
State and local governments across the United States have obtained more than 30 million doses of a malaria drug touted by President Donald Trump to treat patients with the new coronavirus despite warnings from doctors that more research is needed. The states acquired the medication as Trump regularly promoted it from the podium in White House briefings.
The Associated Press' reporting shows at least 22 states and Washington, D.C., secured shipments of the drug, hydroxychloroquine. Sixteen of those states, including South Dakota, were won by Trump in 2016. Five of them including North Carolina and Louisiana are now led by Democratic governors.