WHO backs corticosteroids for patients critically ill with COVID-19

The new advice follows a meta-analysis demonstrating reduced mortality in patients requiring respiratory support

The corticosteroids dexamethasone or hydrocortisone should be given to all critically ill patients with COVID-19, according to strong new recommendations from the WHO.

The updated guidance follows the publication of new evidence overnight showing that the corticosteroids could cut the risk of death by 34% for those with severe or critical disease.

Findings from the meta-analysis of seven clinical trials, published in JAMA, also suggested that the benefit seen in the studies represented a class