Coronavirus: 'We hope Plaquenil will save people,' says Sanofi's Olivier Bogillot
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As the world faces the biggest public health crisis in a century, researchers are exploring whether the drugs chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine could be used effectively to treat the symptoms of the coronavirus. This follows encouraging early results in both France and China. French pharmaceutical company Sanofi said it was ready to offer the French government millions of doses of hydroxychloroquine, sold under its brand name Plaquenil. FRANCE 24's Annette Young spoke to Olivier Bogillot, president of Sanofi France.
Sanofi's Olivier Bogillot expressed hope that Plaquenil, the company's brand name for the drug hydroxychloroquine, would save people from the coronavirus. "We will start probably tomorrow to give the drug to the patients. Probably we will have results in the coming weeks. Once we have the results, we will be in a position to produce and deliver a huge number of doses. I hope, like you and probably most of the people listening to us, that Plaquenil will be effective enough and will treat and save some people," he said.
Bogillot also addressed the wider lessons the pharmaceutical industry can learn from this pandemic. "We have to think in the future (...) at least in Europe, because we considered that locating most of our production elsewhere was a good solution, because we had a lot of pressure from the healthcare system to reduce the price, this crisis shows that it was probably not the right thing to do," he explained. "In the future, we have to change the rules: when you produce in Europe, you have to be rewarded," he told FRANCE 24’s Annette Young.
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