Sandoz donates significant amounts of the drug hydroxychloroquine to treat patients hospitalized for COVID-19 in Croatia. With this donation, the company responded to the needs of Croatian physicians seeking to provide patients with access to potential treatment while advancing clinical research to combat COVID-19.
All quantities of the drug were donated to the Infectious Diseases Clinic “Dr. Fran Mihaljević” and, if needed, will be distributed to other health care institutions in Croatia. The first doses were delivered on Wednesday, April 15th.
Treatment protocol defined by the Clinic for Infectious Diseases „Dr. Fran Mihaljevic” in Zagreb and the Croatian Society for Infectious Diseases includes hydroxychloroquine among the recommended therapies for hospitalized patients infected with COVID-19. The donated amount of the drug is sufficient, according to the aforementioned treatment protocol, for a large number of seriously ill, hospitalized patients. Several clinical trials are underway to investigate the effect of hydroxychloroquine in the treatment of COVID-19. This drug is used to treat malaria and autoimmune diseases such as lupus erythematosus and chronic polyarthritis. Hydroxychloroquine is not yet approved in Europe for the treatment of COVID-19 infections.
Croatian Agency for Medicinal Products and Medical Devices - HALMED, issuing Consent to the introduction of Sandoz, quickly responded to the recommendation for treatment of the Clinic for Infectious Diseases "Dr. Fran Mihaljević ”in Zagreb and the Croatian Society for Infectious Diseases.
CEO of Sandoz Croatia and President of Novartis Group for Croatia Igor Haralovic said it was more important than ever to fulfill our mission of supporting health professionals and the healthcare system in Croatia.
“By donating a large amount of hydroxychloroquine to Croatia, we fulfill our role and mission by providing patients with access to potential treatment and supporting clinical research to combat COVID-19. "- added Igor Haralovic.
This donation is part of a initiative by the Sandoz and Novartis Group to donate 130 million doses of hydroxychloroquine worldwide by the end of May, provided that local regulatory authorities support the use of the drug for COVID-19 infected patients. In addition, Sandoz intends to work closely with other manufacturers to boost hydroxychloroquine production and, if necessary, further assist in the supply of countries worldwide.