The special treatment Donald Trump received to access an experimental Covid-19 drug raises equity issues that begin with the flawed healthcare system many Americans endure and end with the public’s right to learn more about his condition, ethics and medical experts say.
Regeneron Pharmaceuticals Inc revealed how rare it was for anyone to get the drug it gave Trump outside of studies testing its safety and effectiveness, AP reports.
The drug, which provides antibodies to help the immune system clear the coronavirus, is widely considered to be very promising.
Trump also received the antiviral remdesivir and the steroid dexamethasone, and it̵
He deserves special treatment by virtue of his office, said George Annas, who heads Boston University’s center for health law and ethics. The question is whether it is a good treatment.
These drugs have not been tested for mild illness and have not been tested in combination. The steroid appears to run counter to medical guidelines based on what doctors have said about the severity of her disease.
The public is receiving mixed messages about his condition and this is a problem, Annas said, adding that there is a right to know anything that could affect Trump’s ability to do his job.
Trump’s doctors have applied for the Regeneron drug under the compassionate use rules, which allow a patient with a life-threatening disease to get an experimental drug if they can’t sign up for a study to test it and there isn’t a good one. alternative.
Compassionate use requests are decided on a case-by-case basis and both the pharmaceutical company and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration must agree. An FDA spokesperson declined to comment on the FDA’s decision or to say how many other people have requested the drug.
Fewer than 10 of these requests were granted, Regeneron spokeswoman Alexandra Bowie said.
The drug is in limited quantities, the priority is to use it for ongoing studies, and emergency access is only granted in rare and exceptional circumstances, he wrote in an email.
Regeneron has also reached out to Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden’s campaign to make them aware of the compassionate use mechanism, in case they need to question whether Biden gets infected, Bowie said.