COLUMBUS, Ohio — The day a new rule went into effect prohibiting distributors in Ohio from selling or dispensing hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine for the treatment or prevention of COVID-19, Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine asked the State of Ohio Board of Pharmacy to rescind its prohibition.
DeWine said that he believes the decision to prescribe hydroxychloroquine for COVID-19 treatment should be between a doctor and a patient.
I agree with the statement from Dr. Steven Hahn, Commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, that the decision about prescribing hydroxychloroquine to treat COVID-19 should be between a doctor and a patient. Therefore, I am asking the Ohio Board of Pharmacy to halt their new rule prohibiting the selling or dispensing of hydroxychloroquine or chloroquine for the treatment or prevention of COVID-19. The Board of Pharmacy and the State Medical Board of Ohio should revisit the issue, listen to the best medical science, and open the process up for comment and testimony from experts.
As of Thursday all terminal distributors in Ohio, including prescriber clinics, non-resident pharmacies and institutional facilities, are prohibited from selling or dispensing hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine for the treatment or prevention of COVID-19.
The rule, passed on July 20, goes into effect today and terminates all previous approvals to use the drug to treat COVID-19.
Public health organizations have disputed the efficacy of the drug, and early results of the drug’s usage in peer-reviewed trials have not been promising, according to the FDA. The FDA, like the State of Ohio Board of Pharmacy, has banned the use of the drug to treat coronavirus outside of hospital and clinical trial settings.
Under the new rule in Ohio passed by the State of Ohio Board of Pharmacy, hydroxychloroquine will still be able to be prescribed for other conditions and can be used in documented institutional review board-approved clinical trials to test the safety and efficacy of the drug as a treatment for COVID-19.