Hotez, the infectious disease expert, told The Daily Caller News Foundation he was "enthusiastic" about early results of studies involving hydroxychloroquine, though he said more data is needed to determine if the drug can effectively treat coronavirus.
"It's very exciting", Trump said.
Trump said these medications will be made available by prescription.
The drug's long history, the president said, offered some reassurance that its effects wouldn't be harmful.
"Use of chloroquine (tablets) is showing favourable outcomes in humans infected with Coronavirus including faster time to recovery and shorter hospital stay", Rigano stated in the treatment document released last week on 13 March.
Hahn also highlighted another experimental treatment possibility that the FDA is investing: Using plasma derived from blood taken from coronavirus patients who have recovered, and injecting that into other patients in an attempt to potentially jump start their own immune response.
"Of course, it's very early and they haven't treated many people, but it looks encouraging", says Andrew Thorburn, DPhil, professor and chairman of the CU School of Medicine Department of Pharmacology.
Chloroquine is widely available now and could be used off-label, but officials want a formal study to get good information on safety and effectiveness.
But he echoed the president's optimism that anti-viral therapies are being approved to treat the coronavirus and slow the epidemic before a vaccine is developed, which could take up to 18 months. Some have estimated that the administration's plan could provide $1 trillion in funding for Americans and to aid the effort to slow the spread of the coronavirus. But authorities expect the number to increase steeply in the coming days because of increased levels of testing after initial delays.
Asked about why he invoked the Defense Production Act but has not put it into place, the president said that governors bore the brunt of responsibility for ordering medical supplies such as masks and ventilators. "As with testing - the governors are supposed to be doing it". "The federal government's not supposed to be out there buying vast amounts of items and then shipping".
"We now work with four different distributors and as of today are unable to order any chloroquine or hydroxychloroquine", which are on back order, David Light, chief executive of online pharmacy Valisure, said in an emailed statement.
"It's just something that surprised the whole world", he said. "I have great hope for how we're going to come out of this situation". Hydroxychloroquine is more commonly prescribed because it is generally believed to cause fewer side effects, whereas chloroquine has a reputation for more serious side effects but may be prescribed in situations where hydroxychloroquine can not be used.
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