COVID-19 treatments: What’s authorized and what works

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COVID-19 treatments: What’s authorized and what works

New cases of COVID infections are surging and in the U.S. are at the highest levels of the pandemic. The fast-spreading Omicron variant is fueling this acceleration according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and many people are wondering what prevention or treatment options are recommended.

The CDC and FDA recommend vaccines and booster shots as by far the best strategy to prevent preventive severe illness, hospitalizations, and death from COVID. They also recommend N-95 masks (and NOT cloth masks) for protection — emphasizing protection, fit, and comfort. When it comes to wearing masks, the CDC now says:

  • Masking is a critical public health tool for preventing the spread of COVID-19, and it is important to remember that any mask is better than no mask.
  • To protect yourself and others from COVID-19, CDC continues to recommend that you wear the most protective mask you can that fits well and that you will wear consistently.
  • Masks are effective at reducing transmission of COVID-19 when worn consistently and correctly.
  • Some masks offer higher levels of protection than others, although some may be harder to tolerate or wear consistently than others.
  • It is most important to wear a well-fitted mask correctly that is comfortable for you and that provides good protection.
  • While all masks provide some level of protection, properly fitted masks provide the highest level of protection.
  • Wearing a highly protective mask may be most important for certain higher-risk situations or for people at increased risk for severe disease (see below).

In a recent health advisory, the CDC notes that there are treatments available for preventing and treating COVID-19 in specific at-risk populations—such as patients with:

  • cancer,
  • chronic kidney disease,
  • obesity,
  • chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, or
  • diabetes.

The advisory notes that these medications differ in efficacy, route of administration, risk profile, FDA authorization status, and availability. The advisory is intended to help familiarize physicians and other clinicians with what therapeutics are available, understand how and when to prescribe them, recognize contraindications, and how to prioritize their use when faced with supply constraints.

These therapeutics include:

Approved outpatient therapies are compared here.

The advisory details their effectiveness and also provides strategies for these high-risk groups.

The CDC and FDA do not recommend:

There’s more information here:

Of course, you’ll always want to discuss your and your family’s options with your family physician.

This blog was accurate as of the day of posting. However, as the COVID-19 pandemic rapidly evolves and the scientific community’s understanding of the novel coronavirus and the COVID vaccine develops, the information above may have changed since it was last updated. While I aim to keep all of my blogs on COVID and the COVID vaccine up to date, please visit online resources provided by the CDC, WHO, and your local public health department to stay informed on the latest news.

© Copyright WLL, INC. 2022. This blog provides a wide variety of general health information only and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment from your regular physician. If you are concerned about your health, take what you learn from this blog and meet with your personal doctor to discuss your concerns.


  1. Lee Kay says:

    COVID-19 QUICK REFERENCE GUIDE – published by the Citizens’ Council for Health Freedom – author is Twila Brase RN, PRN who has been and is interviewed consistently by numerous Christian broadcasters. Not everyone agrees with Dr. Fauci, the CDC, and FDA and other government agencies (ex. Senator Rand Paul, Dr. Robert Malone, Dr. Peter Mccullough, etc.) My son is studying to be a doctor and is in a residency now, but I’m not so sure anymore that this will be a noble and trusted profession for the future. Along with our other trusted USA institutions, the AMA has gone WOKE!

    • Lee Kay,

      Although there are some good parts of the COVID-19 QUICK REFERENCE GUIDE, there are, unfortunately, some inaccuracies, some disinformation, and some potentially dangerous recommendations. I agree with you that the AMA has gone “woke” on a number of issues, but I’ve found their COVID information to be, for the most part, medically reliable.

      Dr. Walt

  2. God bless you big-time Dr. Walt for taking affirm stand on COVID-19 vaccinations. I know my daughter who works at the downtown hospital ER rejoices that your voice is unambiguous. She sees things happen there among the unvaccinated that many Americans continue to overlook. For example, a 30 something US Marine came in ONE recent afternoon and was dead within four hours. Yes, Omicron can kill if you have no protection against it.

    11 nurses and my daughter, a Crohn’s disease patient, have all become infected. But because they are vaccinated and boosted, they are all back to work after about a week of recovery. So again, I rejoice in your courage and clear trumpet blast to help more people get vaccinated and boosted.

    So gratefully, Dr. Cliff Kelly

    • Dr. Kelly,

      Thanks for the feedback and kind words. Both are an encouragement, affirmation, and blessing . . . as you always are and have been. As your daughter and all who are on the front lines are seeing, omicron is milder, but not necessarily mild. And, it’s primarily a pandemic in the unvaccinated. Unvaccinated people are about six times more likely to test positive than vaccinated people, nine times more likely to be hospitalized, and 14 times more likely to die from COVID-related complications. Forty-seven million eligible American adults and more than twelve million teens are still not fully vaccinated and remain at the highest risk of disease. For any of my readers, if you or your family members are not yet vaccinated against COVID, please carefully consider the benefits of vaccination. Roll up your sleeves and get protected and then boosted, especially if you will be around those who are at higher risk or children under the age of five who are not yet eligible for vaccination.


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