The study, formally titled WHIP COVID-19 Study, is a 3,000+ subject look at whether the drug prevents front-line workers and their family members from contracting the virus. Once they provide a blood sample, the study subjects will receive vials with unidentified, specific pills to take over the next eight weeks: a once-a-week dose of hydroxychloroquine, a once-a-day dose, or a placebo (a pill that looks like the medication, but does not contain any medication or other active ingredients). The study medication was specially procured for this study and will not impact the supply of medication for people who already take the medication for other conditions.
Participants will not know what group they are in. They will then be contacted weekly and in person at week 4 and week 8 of the study to see if they are exhibiting any symptoms of COVID-19, including dry cough, fever or breathing issues, as well as any medication side effects. At eight weeks, they will be checked again for symptoms, medication side effects, and have blood drawn. Results will be compared among the three groups to see if the medication had any effect.