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Coronavirus

Peru scraps hydroxychloroquine, azithromycin from Covid-19 medication list

The Peruvian government has revoked the inclusion of hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin on the list of medications recommended to treat Covid-19, in the wake of studies that show neither drug is effective in combating the disease, while antiviral Remdesivir has shown positive results. 

When it first recommended the use of hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin back in April, Peru’s Health Ministry had already warned there was no robust evidence to support the efficiency of either drug, but allowed their use at the discretion of medical professionals.  

However, the decision to remove the medications from the list came soon after the director of the country’s health technology evaluation institute was fired following a study on the effectiveness of hydroxychloroquine in treating Covid-19. As Gestión newspaper reports, Peru’s Health Ministry is still evaluating the study, but it has already been criticized for a lack of scientific rigor. 

Hydroxychloroquine has been widely touted as a Covid-19 treatment by several world leaders, especially Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro, who claims to be living proof that the medicine works.

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By Gustavo Ribeiro

An award-winning journalist, Gustavo has extensive experience covering Brazilian politics and international affairs. He has been featured across Brazilian and French media outlets and founded The Brazilian Report in 2017. He holds a master’s degree in Political Science and Latin American studies from Panthéon-Sorbonne University in Paris.