ROSLYN, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) – One New York doctor claims to have kept hundreds of coronavirus patients out of the hospital with a cocktail of medications.

It’s been criticized as unproven, but now a major hospital in New York is launching a clinical trial based on the treatment, reports CBS2’s Carolyn Gusoff.

In the village of Kiryas Joel in Orange County, Dr. Vladimir Zelenko, a self-described “country doctor,” says a cocktail of medicines keeps his patients alive.

Weeks ago, he recorded this message for President Donald Trump: “I’m seeing tremendous positive results. I haven’t sent any patient to the hospital yet, even though I’ve treated hundreds already.”

Zelenko prescribes the malaria drug hydroxychloroquine but only when two other substances are added, an antibiotic and zinc.

“All the hydroxychloroquine does is open the door and let the zinc in,” said Zelenko, a board-certified family physician.

Hydroxychloroquine got the president’s attention, and swiftly got him criticism for touting unfounded cures.

“There are people dying,” said Trump at the time. “If it works, that would be great.”

MORE: Max Minute: Can Hydroxychloroquine Help Coronavirus Patients?

It’s Zelenko’s combination of meds given early on when people first get sick that makes his protocol unique. He claims of his 400 patients at high risk for severe illness, only two died.

In New York State, though, that’s a Catch-22. To prevent shortages, pharmacists can only dispense hydroxychloroquine for severe hospital-based cases. By then, Zelenko says it’s ineffective.

“There is a very narrow window of opportunity where you can hit this virus hard and early where it makes all the difference,” said Zelenko.

Now science will weigh in. St. Francis Hospital in Roslyn is launching a study using essentially Zelenko’s cocktail. On newly symptomatic patients with underlying conditions, Hydroxychloroquine and zinc will be given to all of them.

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Two groups will receive different antibiotics.

Cardiologist Dr. Avni Thakore is the study’s principal investigator.

“What we know about the mechanism of action of the drugs suggests they could be helpful early in the course of a viral infection,” said Thakore. “We know zinc is an anti-viral. We know that hydroxychloroquine can help reduce an immune response that can get out of control. We also know zinc helps the hydroxychloroquine come inside the cell.”

Administered early, rather than as a Hail Mary for the sickest which has had disappointing results, and to protect participants from any increased heart risk that have prompted safety concerns, Thakore notes “we are going to be monitoring their EKG from home.”

In all touted treatments, data is first needed, says cardiologist Dr. Alan Kadish, president of Touro College.

“All drugs have side effects and we don’t want to treat millions of people with a combination that we don’t know is safe and effective,” said Kadish.

MORE: Coronavirus New Warning: FDA Alerts About Hydroxychloroquine, Chloroquine Use After Poisonings, Deaths

“If we can manage this early and control it, and prevent people from getting very sick and hospitalized, that’s where we need to have good data and good science,” said Thakore.

Zelenko, who’s offered up his cases for peer review, is hopeful.

“This is an absolute revolution in how this disease will be treated,” he said.

The study will enroll 750 patients with early symptoms.

To see if you are eligible for this clinical trial, download this St. Francis Hospital criteria and either call 516-414-3056 or visit the St. Francis Hospital emergency room if you suspect you have early COVID-19 symptoms.

Comments (9)
  1. HUMBERTO ATILIO BERTOLINI says:

    Please, does anybody know how this study is , actually?
    Thanks. HB

  2. skihills says:

    Bravo CBS, this is one of the first stories I’ve seen that even attempts to tell the truth about the potential effectiveness of this treatment and the patient population that is most likely to benefit from it !!! Most of the “medical experts” and MSM ignored Zelenko’s prescribed combination of drugs (failure to include Zn) and only treated severely infected, hospitalized patients (patients Zelenko said would be less likely to benefit from his treatment) in studies they reference and when no positive results were seen declared the treatment dangerous, fake and unproven. It seems to me that the studies (most anecdotal in nature) to date and the news media commentary on this drug have been totally negative and numerous, simply because the President Trump suggested the drug was a POTENTIAL game changer. …… God forbid anyone present a positive outlook on anything these days.

  3. scottmc37 says:

    God bless Dr Zelenko, a remarkable man…..He looks unusual, but once he opens his mouth you know what he’s talking about

  4. obrlnews says:

    Beware, they will “test” it on nearly dead people, and claim that it “doesn’t work”. But the pharmacy drugs under patent profit protection, they will test on healthy people, and claim great results. Already, YouTube has deleted the video, naturally, because they are leftist totalitarians wanting ordinary people to suffer and die.

  5. Fauci should be removed immediately.

  6. Brian K says:

    Let’s hope the St. Francis Hospital study of this treatment that may benefit us all for less than 20 dollars won’t be compromised by those who stand to lose billions in lost revenue. It just takes someone to sneak in to St. Francis and get to the study patients to make HCQ and Zinc sulfate combination “inconclusive” just like the VA study. Please God, may this study be fair and truthful and bring the needed hope we all need at this time, especially to our seniors and those at high risk.

  7. Doctor Phogg says:

    Hydroxychloroquine was already in use on the cruise ships in 2019.

  8. DeeJay says:

    Clinical studies of HCQ + zinc and HCQ w/Azithromycin if secondary pneumonia have already proven effective against SARS (the worse form of Covid 19) since 2005, Fauci, NIH, FDA, CDC knows and are covering it up. More recent studies confirmed effectiveness against this virus (SARS Cov2)

  9. sparkymcbiff says:

    And of course as usual the YouTube video is already deleted. YouTube has become completely FASCIST and nothing other than the official opinion of the deep state government (read: Bill Gates) will be allowed.

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