Accord Healthcare Ltd, the principal European subsidiary of Intas Pharmaceuticals and the largest supplier by volume of generic medicines to the NHS, is collaborating on a large multi-national study into the prevention of COVID-19 infection using hydroxychloroquine, a drug that may have an effect in preventing and/or reducing symptoms of COVID-19, in line with the WHO’s targeted research priorities. The global COPCOV (chloroquine / hydroxychloroquine prevention of COVID-19 in the healthcare setting; a randomised, placebo-controlled prophylaxis) study involves 40,000 frontline healthcare workers who are caring for COVID-19 patients and is planned to start shortly.
COPCOV will be led by UK scientists from the University of Oxford and funded by the Wellcome Trust; the study pools the resources of international experts* across multiple continents. Accord will provide up to two million tablets of hydroxychloroquine to the trial, free of charge, along with two million tablets of matched placebo.
Professor Sir Nicholas White, Wellcome Trust Principal Fellow and consultant physician at the University of Oxford said:
“The hypothesis for this study is that chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine might both slow viral replication in exposed subjects, attenuating or preventing the infection. There is extensive experience with these well-established drugs in the prevention and treatment of malaria and rheumatological conditions. We need to find out urgently in a large definitive study if they can prevent COVID19. If they do prove effective, then they would be a readily deployable and affordable preventive measure for high risk individuals such as healthcare workers”.