COVID-19 Treatment Guidelines: Do They Really Reflect Best Medical Practices to Manage the Pandemic?

Author(s): Hala J. Al-Obaidi

SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) has been changing the world since December 2019. A comprehensive search into many COVID-19 treatment guidelines was conducted and reported in this article. This is a review paper to probe differences in COVID-19 managing strategies and explore the most common treatment plans among countries. Published guidelines from 23 countries and three references guidelines— until the end of 2020—were included in this article. The majority of COVID-19 treatment options were reported in this review and it includes antiviral drugs, antimalarial drugs, antibiotics, corticosteroids, immunotherapy, anticoagulants, and other pharmacological treatment. The presence of such information from different countries in a single comprehensive review article could help in understanding and speculation of variation in the recommended treatment in each country. This might be related to the cost of medications, the access to the medications, availability of medication that could potentially be useful in managing COVID-19 cases, and the availability/capacity of healthcare facilities. Finally, although there are various treatment groups listed in the published therapeutic guidelines worldwide, unfortunately, there is no evidence for effectiveness of most of these medications in reducing the COVID-19 mortality curve over more than one year of this global pandemic.

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