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Hind Al Soulia - Riyadh - Saudi Gazette report
RIYADH — Clinical tests are being conducted in seven hospitals employing four methods of treatment of coronavirus infection in the Kingdom, and among them three are anti-viral medicines having a wide range of uses and a high safety level, the Ministry of Health announced in a statement carried by Saudi Press Agency on Monday.
The tests as part of the World Health Organization’s efforts launched several weeks ago to harness a broad global coalition to develop and evaluate candidate vaccines as quickly and safely as possible for the treatment of COVID-19 disease.
Assistant Minister of Health and Health Ministry spokesman Dr. Muhammad Al-Abdulaali said Saudi Arabia is also using plasma therapy in treating coronavirus patients in three regions of the Kingdom and the research is continuing. As part of the therapy, plasma taken from the recovered cases is transfused into active patients.
He denied any link of a specific treatment with the rise in recovery cases. Al-Abdulaali attributed the increase in the number of COVID-19 cases to accessing hotspots of the disease.
The present curve suggests that the interventions and precautions are effective in preventing the situation to reach an alarming level. So maintaining the interventions and precautions is a must. Till now 350,000 meticulous tests have been conducted, Al-Abdulaali said.
He drew attention to the fact that the total capacity in government and private hospitals allocated for combating the disease has reached 80,000 beds. Of these, 8000 beds are fitted with intensive care units that can deal with critical care cases.
Meanwhile, in a press conference he held on Sunday, Dr. Abdullah Asiri, professor of contagious diseases at the Ministry of Health said: “Tests are being carried out on volunteers to determine the effectiveness of these medicines. The health of volunteers undergoing these tests is being monitored continuously.”
“Preliminary results are expected to be out within weeks, through which it can be determined if the medicines are effective and whether they can play a role in the treatment. Till now it is not known if these medicines are effective for the treatment of COVID-19 disease,” Prof. Asiri said.
“The Kingdom is implementing several therapeutic protocols, some of which have proved effective. The purpose is not treatment, but to speed up recovery and increase the body’s immunity,” Prof. Asiri stressed.
Other Saudi authorities are conducting non-clinical research covering the preventive aspects and combating infection. Several laboratories are expected to contribute to the global efforts to combat the virus, he said.
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