A state Health Department official said the DOH has shipped doses of hydroxychloroquine to 56 hospitals across New York, distributing enough “to treat 4,000 patients to date.”

Patients have received doses as part of four- or 10-day regimens, officials said.

The University of Albany’s School of Public Health is observing the drug’s impact on the patients, and its preliminary study could come back in weeks instead of the usual months, officials said.

There are also clinical trials being conducted to see whether the drug can help block transmission.