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The Daily Record's Maryland state government blog

Hogan orders limits on prescriptions of COVID-19 drugs

FILE - In this Thursday, April 9, 2020 file photo, a chemist displays hydroxychloroquine tablets in New Delhi, India. Scientists in Brazil have stopped part of a study of the malaria drug touted as a possible coronavirus treatment after heart rhythm problems developed in one-quarter of people given the higher of two doses being tested. Chloroquine and a similar drug, hydroxychloroquine, have been pushed by President Donald Trump after some early tests suggested the drugs might curb coronavirus entering cells. (AP Photo/Manish Swarup, File)

FILE – In this Thursday, April 9, 2020 file photo, a chemist displays hydroxychloroquine tablets in New Delhi, India. Chloroquine and a similar drug, hydroxychloroquine, have been pushed by President Donald Trump after some early tests suggested the drugs might curb coronavirus entering cells. (AP Photo/Manish Swarup, File)

The prescribing of three medications touted by President Donald Trump as a possible cure for COVID-19 has been limited under an executive order issued by Gov. Larry Hogan.

Hogan’s executive order, signed Tuesday but posted on his website a day later, bans the prescribing of chloroquine and hydroxychoroquine, two drugs used to treat malaria and some other immunological diseases, and azithromycin, an antibiotic, for treatment of patients with undiagnosed COVID-19 or to prevent undiagnosed COVID-19.

Earlier this week the Maryland State Board of Physicians issued an alert expressing concern about the use and hoarding of the drugs.

“The Board is also aware of numerous reports that prescribers are inappropriately issuing prescriptions and refills for those medications and hoarding or stockpiling the medications for themselves, family members, friends, and coworkers without any apparent medical indication, or in anticipation of COVID-19 related illness,” according to the board’s alert. “The Board is concerned that the inappropriate prescribing and stockpiling of the medications is causing shortages of those drugs and compromising access to drug therapy for patients who are prescribed the drugs for FDA approved indications.”

Trump has described the drugs as “a game changer” in fighting the pandemic. Clinical trials involving the drugs are being conducted, including one started last week by the National Institutes of Health.

Hogan’s order, effective immediately, requires prescriptions for the drug to be written by doctors licensed in Maryland who have a documented relationship with the patient. The prescription must also include documentation as to the medical reason for the prescription.

The order allows the prescribing of the drug for patients who have been confirmed to have COVID-19 but limits prescriptions to a 14-day supply. Clinical trials and hospital uses are also permitted under the order.

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8 comments

  1. Until there is a proven vaccine for Covid 19, and having watched newscasts about the Malaria drug’s successes night after night for weeks, I cannot believe Gov. Hogan took it upon himself(because he;s a Never Trumper) to second guess doctors’ success rates. He’s only a realtor!

  2. So, now Hogan is trying to be a doctor. I mean why not..he’s a failure as a Govenor and as a Republican.

  3. Eldon Wayne Lehman

    In many places it is an over the counter drug. Claimed to be safer than aspirin. Why not allow people to purchase it and take it. No one wants to die or have a relative die. Especially when there is a safe, affordable, prevention and cure available. This kind of legislating is not Democracy, A government of the people, by the people, for the people. Rather a government of the people, by the elite, for the elite. We need to take back our country before it is gone forever.

  4. Stephanie McClellan

    This is outrageous! Hogan you are truly showing yourself to be a wolf in sheep’s clothing.
    Should be between the individual and their doctor as to what medications they take.

  5. My God, who does he think he is, GOD? If I want to use this cheap effective drug I will!! This action is illegal and he needs to be impeached now. Also now telling us we can’t travel to other states!! He is a buffoon of the Dem Communist Party now! How do we legally push back on this? Can we order it online from Canada? This is insane, illegal, and none of his business!!

  6. Dear Governor Hogan. Please rethink your ban on HCQ for both early treatment of and prevention of Covid-19. Allow the doctor to decide if their patient can take this medication. Take it out of the realm of politics, leave it with medicine. I believe your ban was premature and spurred by a so called “ study” that was retracted from The Lancet two weeks after publishing , because it was bogus! I am a retired RN BSN with 40 years bedside experience. Please allow this medicine, it will save lives and hospitalizations!

  7. This drug is a life saver. Why is Hogan letting the rest of us die! We should have the right to try this drug!

  8. Some of us have been taking this for year for existing medical conditions and don’t need there to be a shortage

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