Comparison of Demand for Drugs Used for COVID-19 Treatment and Other Drugs During the Early Phase of the COVID-19 Pandemic in Italy | Critical Care Medicine | JAMA Network Open | JAMA Network
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    Research Letter
    Pharmacy and Clinical Pharmacology
    February 8, 2021

    Comparison of Demand for Drugs Used for COVID-19 Treatment and Other Drugs During the Early Phase of the COVID-19 Pandemic in Italy

    Author Affiliations
    • 1Italian Medicines Agency, Rome, Italy
    JAMA Netw Open. 2021;4(2):e2037060. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2020.37060

    In February 2020, Italy was the first European country to detect coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in individuals and rapidly turned into one of the most-affected regions of the world. The National Health Service (NHS), which provides universal coverage to citizens, was challenged as never before in the history of the institution. Because no approved drug was available, patients received potentially effective drugs, participated in clinical trials, accessed compassionate drug use programs, or self-medicated.1 The aim of this study was to evaluate changes in drug demand during the early phase of the COVID-19 outbreak in Italy compared with the period before the outbreak.