W.Va. Attorney General urging consumers not to hoard potential COVID-19 drugs

West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey, in consultation with West Virginia's Board of Pharmacy, is urging people not to hoard prescription drugs that may prove helpful in the fight against COVID-19.
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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WDTV)-- West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey, in consultation with West Virginia's Board of Pharmacy, is urging people not to hoard prescription drugs that may prove helpful in the fight against COVID-19.

According to a news release from the Attorney General's office, the Board of Pharmacy, in coordination with the West Virginia Board of Medicine and Board of Osteopathic Medicine, published an emergency rule this past weekend seeking to ensure the prescription drugs chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine are only dispensed to individuals with a current, legitimate medical need.

Morrisey issued a consumer alert Friday evening, urging people not to hoard drugs like Hydroxychloroquine.

“Every individual should refrain from hoarding any drug product or equipment that could help our state defeat the coronavirus pandemic,” Morrisey said. “I applaud the Board of Pharmacy for implementing its emergency rule. Any medication that has the potential to treat coronavirus must be in enough supply for those who need it most.”

Reports of some prescribers writing prescriptions for these drugs for "undiagnosed family, friends and coworkers create concern for the Attorney General, board of Pharmacy and other experts," according to the news release.

The Attorney General's office says they worry such conduct will lead to a shortage of medication.

According to the Attorney General's office, the emergency rule limits chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine prescriptions to only those patients with a written diagnosis from a prescriber. The rule also limits such prescription to no more than 30 tablets with no refills permitted.

The rule took effect Saturday. It includes an exemption for any patient previously established on the medication prior to the effective date of the rule, according to the Attorney General's office.