South Dakota To Be First State To Conduct Hydroxychloroquine Trials

South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem announced Monday that her state will be the first to conduct clinical trials of hydroxychloroquine, a drug hailed by many doctors and patients as a miracle solution in the fight against an invisible enemy, the coronavirus.

“From day one, I’ve said we’re going to let the science, facts, and data drive our decision-making in South Dakota. Throughout last week, I communicated with White House officials to let them know that South Dakota’s medical community was ready to step up and lead the way on research efforts,” Noem said in Monday’s press release.

Her statement continued, “I made direct requests to President Trump and Vice President Pence to supply us with enough hydroxychloroquine so that it could be made available for every hospitalized person the state may have as well as for those healthcare workers on the frontlines and those in the most vulnerable populations.”

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration authorized the emergency use of hydroxychloroquine last month after it showed promising results of recovery in early clinical trials. The anti-malaria pill, coupled with the antibiotic azithromycin, has since been used to treat many patients diagnosed with the coronavirus.

South Dakota will soon test the drug on a larger scale with the help of Sanford Health, Avera and Monument Health. The three providers will treat up to 100,000 coronavirus patients, healthcare workers and anyone else with high-risk of exposure to the virus, according to the press release.

The state currently has 868 confirmed cases of the virus and has seen six deaths.