Remdesivir drug, an experimental treatment used to combat Donald Trump's coronavirus infection, should not be used in hospitals because there is no evidence it works, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).
Remdesivir, an antiviral medication, was tested alongside three other drugs - hydroxychloroquine, lopinavir/ritonavir and interferon - that have previously been touted as possible treatments for Covid-19, reported The Guardian.
Donald Trump was an enthusiastic proponent of the drug, to the point where he boasted in July that he had bought up the world's entire stock for Americans. The WHO's guidelines committee, however, has said Covid patients may be better off without it.
According to a press release, there is currently no evidence that remdesivir improves survival or the need for ventilation. The recommendation is based on a new evidence review comparing the effects of several drug treatments for Covid-19.
The recommendation is part of a living guideline, developed by WHO with the methodological support of MAGIC Evidence Ecosystem Foundation, the press release said.
The WHO GDG expert panel concluded that remdesivir has no meaningful effect on mortality or on other important outcomes for patients after thoroughly reviewing the evidence, the press release reads.
The panel acknowledged that the certainty of evidence is low and said the evidence did not prove that remdesivir has no benefit. Rather, there is no evidence based on currently available data that it improves important patient outcomes.
The group also supported continuous enrolment into trials evaluating remdesivir, especially to provide higher certainty of evidence for specific groups of patients, the press release added.
Remdesivir has received worldwide attention as a potentially effective treatment for severe Covid-19 and is increasingly used to treat patients in hospital, the press release further said.