WHO Backs Pfizer's Oral COVID Antiviral Therapy For High-Risk Patients

  • The World Health Organization (WHO) endorsed Pfizer Inc's PFE oral COVID-19 antiviral treatment in high-risk patients.
  • The endorsement follows the analysis of trial data by the U.N. agency showed that the therapy dramatically cut the risk of hospitalization.
  • A WHO analysis of two Paxlovid clinical trials involving nearly 3,100 patients suggested it reduced the risk of hospitalization by 85%. 
  • The agency said that in high-risk patients, those with over 10% risk of hospitalization, using Paxlovid could lead to 84 fewer hospitalizations per 1,000 patients.
  • One obstacle for low- and middle-income countries is that the medicine can only be administered while the disease is early. Hence, access to quick and accurate tests is imperative to identify patients.
  • More than 30 generic drugmakers have also been allowed to manufacture cheaper versions of Paxlovid to sell in 95 countries. But may take some time to comply with international standards so that they can supply the medicine internationally.
  • The WHO also updated its recommendation on Gilead Science Inc's GILD remdesivir, saying it should be used in mild or moderate COVID-19 patients at high risk of hospitalization.
  • It had previously recommended its use in all COVID-19 patients, regardless of disease severity.
  • Price Action: PFE shares are down 0.45% at $48.89, GILD shares traded higher by 0.24% at $63.90 during the premarket session on the last check Friday.
  • Photo by Thomas Breher from Pixabay
Posted In: BriefsCOVID-19 CoronavirusCOVID-19 VaccineBiotechNewsHealth CareTop StoriesGeneral