Why isn’t there more focus on a COVID cure?

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The world has been waiting with baited breath for a vaccine that can prevent infection of the novel coronavirus.

And while there have been extremely encouraging developments on the vaccine front this week, some might be wondering if a cure for the disease is on its way too.

Unfortunately, that seems unlikely to come anytime soon, if ever.

“There is no cure out there,” said Dr. Dara Kass, emergency medicine physician and medical contributor for Yahoo! “The term ‘cure’ I think is misleading. The idea that there is going to be a medication that eradicates this virus from your body, I haven’t seen any candidates that are even close to doing that.”

While some – including President Trump – have touted synthetic antibody treatments as a cure for COVID-19, Dr. Kass says that is not the case.

“That is not a cure, it doesn’t remove the virus from your body. It basically speeds up the ability of your body to fight off the virus before a bad phase.”

These treatments can be helpful early in the course of a patient’s illness to reduce the severity of the disease and speed up their recovery.

“There are very few things we cure with medication. There are certainly very few viruses we cure with medication,” said Dr. Kass. “So what I would say is, prevention is the best approach right now, especially since the infection itself is unpredictable.”

Thankfully, Dr. Kass says there are many strategies that we know can reduce and prevent infection, including avoiding gatherings, mask wearing and keeping your distance from others; and hopefully soon, a vaccine.