NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) – Covid-19 cases are spiking in 21 states. Leading expert Dr. Anthony Fauci is warning that the pandemic is not over yet.
“We never said it was over, even if some people thought it was over,” says Dr. Joseph Vinetz.
The infectious disease specialist with Yale Medicine points to states reopening.
He says, “It’s really hard to have either lockdown or not lockdown. It’s subtle. But I think that if we didn’t have our measures in place to control the spread of infection such as any of opening up procedures, wearing masks, things would be worse.”
With no proven treatment or vaccine, face masks, social distancing, and hand hygiene are essential.
Researchers like Dr. Vinetz though are working to find a way to fight back. The Yale School of Medicine scientist is leading the first outpatient clinical trial in the country okayed by the FDA.
“We are now starting an outpatient trial, ” he says. “That is people that aren’t in the hospital with a pill, taken four times a day in an out patient setting.”
The drug Camostat, already in use in Japan for pancreatitis, was found to be successful against the novel coronavirus in laboratory settings.
Dr. Vinetz says, “What we do not have is an oral medication, a pill, that we can give that we know will help people get better faster.”
It is a randomized placebo-controlled study, meaning half will get the medication and the other will not.
“We are focused on people of color in the New Haven community who may be most at risk for COVID-19 infection,” says Dr. Vinetz.
The work gets underway next week.
For more information – https://medicine.yale.edu/profile/joseph_vinetz/