UK Authorises First Pill That Treats CoViD-19

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UK Authorises First Pill That Treats CoViD-19

The UK has approved the first pill to treat Covid-19. Molnupiravir is a newly developed medicine that has been shown to cut the risk of death by as much as 80% It also cuts the risk of hospitalisation by 50%. In clinical trials of 775 people with Covid-19, not a single person treated with the drug died.


The drug was developed by US drug companies Merck, Sharp and Dohme (MSD) and Ridgeback Biotherapeutics and could fundamentally change the way Covid-19 is dealt with. The UK continues, despite a widespread and successful vaccination program, to experience hundreds of deaths a day from the disease that has already killed over 150,000 people within the country.


The UK will purchase almost half a million courses of the drug which has to be administered within 5 days of Covid-19 symptoms appearing in order to be effective.


A spokesperson from the MHRA, the UK's drug administration body, said of the breakthrough drug:


"It is the world's first approved antiviral for this disease that can be taken by mouth rather than administered intravenously. This is important, because it means it can be administered outside of a hospital setting, before Covid-19 has progressed to a severe stage."


Prof Penny Ward, of King's College London, told the BBC:


"If these outcomes are replicated in the UK population, then the number of cases requiring hospital admission could be halved and the number of deaths greatly reduced. It seems likely that it will be restricted for use by those at highest risk of disease complications - for example older adults with heart, lung or kidney disease, diabetes or cancer."


Concerns have however been raised over the cost of the drug. While the UK has not stated how much it has spent the United States is known to have purchased 1.7 million courses at a cost of $1.2 billion. This indicates that the drug is quite expensive, particularly if it going to be prescribed to very large groups of people over long periods of time.


Several other drug manufacturers are currently working on similar anti-Covid-19 drugs however none have so far been approved by regulators.


[Based on reporting by: BBC]


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Thinking Humanity: UK Authorises First Pill That Treats CoViD-19
UK Authorises First Pill That Treats CoViD-19
The UK has approved the first pill to treat Covid-19. Molnupiravir is a newly developed medicine that has been shown to cut the risk of death by as mu
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