FDA has authorized the first COVID-19 antiviral pill. This Wednesday, the Food and Drug Administration was said to have authorized the first antiviral pill to help treat COVID-19, a gives doctors another tool to fight this deadly disease.
The treatment which was made by Pfizer curbs the risk of hospitalization and death in high-risk patients infected with the coronavirus.
The drug is authorized for people of about 12 years of age and above who are at high risk of getting seriously down if they contract the viruses.
According to the verge, it is called Paxlovid, the treatment is said to include 30 pills to be taken at home over a period of five days.
It has to be started within a few days of symptoms which could be a challenge in the United States, where it may be difficult for many people to get a COVID-19 test, a result, and see a doctor for a prescription in that window.
FDA Has Authorized the First COVID-19 Antiviral Pill
Paxlovid cut down the risk of hospitalization and even death by 89 percent for adults with COVID-19 that are at high risk of developing the serious disease when it was given within a period of three days with symptoms appearing.
The FDA is also revising a second COVID-19 antiviral that is called molnupiravir, which is said to be made by pharmaceutical company Merck.
That drug appears not as effective as Paxlovid a clinical trial found it only reduces the risk of hospitalization and death from COVID-19 by 30 percent. France canceled its order for molnupiravir on Wednesday.
Pills Are Cheaper and Easier To Use than Monoclonal Antibody Therapies
The pills are cheaper and easier to use than the monoclonal antibody therapies, which have been a major treatment that is been used for people after they contract COVID-19.
Those require an infusion. Pills also may remain as effective against the omicron variant of the coronavirus as against other variants, like Delta.
The drugs mainly target proteins that help the coronavirus make copies of itself and the newly discovered variant does not have many mutations in that part of the virus.
Most monoclonal antibodies appear ineffective against the omicron variant. The Biden administration expects to have about 250,000 courses of the Pfizer pills available by the end of January, Bloomberg reported.