Chloroquine and Hydroxychloroquine for the Prevention or Treatment of Novel Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) in Africa: Caution for Inappropriate Off-Label Use in Healthcare Settings

Novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19), caused by the novel severe acute respiratory syndrome-coronavirus-2 (SARSCoV-2), has rapidly spread into a global pandemic. Africa initially appeared spared, but as of this writing, all countries except Lesotho have confirmed cases. As of April 15, 2020, there were 11,367 confirmed COVID-19 cases, with 523 deaths (4.6% case fatality) reported across the WHO African region. In other settings such as the United States, Europe, and China, morbidity and mortality have been highest in those older than 60 years and with underlying comorbidities such as arterial hypertension, heart disease, diabetes, and chronic lung disease; young adults and children seem to have relatively mild disease and low mortality.
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