Scientists from Seattle’s Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and the University of Washington say the search for COVID-19 treatments should widen its focus from hospitalized patients to people who are just starting to experience symptoms.
They’re calling for a shift in strategy in an article published in Open Forum Infectious Diseases. “A golden opportunity to intervene early is being missed,” they write.
There’s already been some success in the hunt for drugs that can treat COVID-19. Preliminary results suggest that an experimental antiviral drug called remdesivir can reduce the recovery time for hospitalized patients, while a low-cost steroid known as dexamethasone can reduce the death rate among patients who experience respiratory distress.
But the researchers from the Seattle area, which was ground zero for America’s coronavirus outbreak, say the hunt should be expanded beyond hospitals.