(THE CONVERSATION) Even with three highly effective vaccines available in abundance throughout the country, the delta variant of SARS-CoV-2 continues to cause a large number of new infections, particularly in states where vaccination rates remain low. What’s more, as schools and businesses reopen and the holiday season approaches, another rise in infections may be on the way.
There is, however, some good news. Numerous medications, including fledgling and repurposed drugs, are accessible. For hospitalized COVID-19 patients, these new treatments, along with supportive care advances – such as placing some patients on their stomachs in a “prone position” – were helping bring down mortality rates before the Delta variant hit and are continuing to improve patient outcomes today.
As an infectious diseases physician and scientist, I have been working to find new treatments for patients since the pandemic’s beginning. Here’s a look at some of them, with one caveat: While these medications might help many patients, none substitute for the vaccine, which is still the best defense against the virus.
The right drug at the right time