Prism Clinical Research collaborates with University of Minnesota researchers in COVID-19 prevention treatment study for healthcare workers
Prism Clinical Research (a Nucleus Network company) is playing a key role in supporting the University of Minnesota as it commences trialling a COVID-19 prevention treatment targeting frontline healthcare workers and first responders.
David Boulware, MD, MPH, a professor in the University of Minnesota Medical School’s Department of Medicine in the Division of Infectious Diseases and International Medicine, leads the trial with a collaborative team from the University, including infectious disease faculty physicians, biostatisticians, pharmacologists and students.
Principal Investigator Radha Rajasingham, MD, is an assistant professor in the Medical School’s Department of Medicine in the Division of Infectious Diseases and International Medicine.
“We are working with Prism Research for their pharmacy services and I want to thank Prism Research for supporting our study,” said Dr Rajasingham, who is working on the “Pre-exposure Prophylaxis for SARS-Coronavirus 2: A pragmatic randomized clinical trial.”
As the COVID-19 pandemic escalates, Rajasingham said there is an urgent need to identify treatment and prophylaxis of COVID-19. “Our study evaluates the efficacy of hydroxychloroquine in preventing COVID-19 in high-risk healthcare workers.”
The University of Minnesota research team has confirmed that hydroxychloroquine will be given to non-hospitalized people with COVID-19 to determine if the treatment is effective in preventing hospitalization and decreasing the severity of symptoms.
If the results of this trial validate the efficacy of hydroxychloroquine, this would ensure a robust workforce in hospitals and nursing homes. It could potentially complement existing public health strategies to reduce the burden of COVID-19 disease.
Hydroxychloroquine is an FDA-approved medicine for the prevention and treatment of malaria, which has been available since the 1950s and commonly known as Plaquenil(R). Recent work shows that hydroxychloroquine is active in a laboratory setting against the novel SARS-Cov-2 virus.
“If effective, this may become a worldwide standard of care for helping prevent disease in other healthcare workers and people exposed,” said Boulware. “Hydroxychloroquine is an off-patent, generic medicine that is inexpensive. A five-day treatment course would cost approximately $12.”
“Prism has the opportunity to be a contributor in the battle to tackle the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Prism Vice President, Jeff Cosgrove. “As a key collaborator in the development of this promising therapeutic, Prism’s role in solving the current pandemic is top of mind.”
“For Prism, being part of the team that is striving to protect our frontline high-risk health care workers, and working on critical medical advancements, is why we exist,” said Cosgrove.
Nucleus Network and Prism continue to monitor and respond to the evolving challenge of the global COVID-19/Coronavirus outbreak. Information is regularly being sourced from the United States Government and the World Health Organisation websites. Nucleus Network and Prism will continue to update and refine its approach to COVID-19 as more information about the virus continues to be learned.
A member of the large coronavirus family COVID-19 presents in most cases as a mild flu-type illness. However, symptoms may be severe or life threatening in elderly patients and those with pre-existing conditions (e.g. diabetes, high blood pressure or cardiovascular disease) or compromised immunity.
To protect the Prism community, we have implemented additional measures to minimize the introduction or spread of COVID-19 in our organisation. This includes additional questioning of participants or site visitors prior to attending Prism and again upon arrival to Prism. Participants and visitors will also be educated on handwashing practices during their visit or inpatient stay.
We ask that any participant or visitor to Prism provide honest and truthful answers so that the safety of our participants and employees is not compromised.
We look forward to your ongoing support and cooperation in this evolving situation.
(Information correct as of 12 Mar 2020)
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- Prism Clinical Research collaborates with University of Minnesota researchers in COVID-19 prevention treatment study for healthcare workers