Remdesivir given fast-track approval to treat Coronavirus

Remdesivir given fast-track approval to treat Coronavirus

"The latest, expert scientific advice is at the heart of every decision we make, and we will continue to monitor remdesivir's success in clinical trials across the country to ensure the best results for United Kingdom patients".

As the numbers of Covid-19 cases and related deaths continue to rise, newly released data on Gilead's remdesivir safety and efficacy shows patients with Covid-19 who took the drug recovered faster than patients who did not take the drug.

Thanks to the joined-up efforts of the United Kingdom government, the devolved administrations, pharmaceutical company Gilead Sciences, the NHS, and the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), the anti-viral drug remdesivir will be made available to patients meeting certain clinical criteria to support their recovery in hospital. Trial results also suggested a survival benefit, with a 14-day mortality rate of 7.1% for the group receiving remdesivir versus 11.9% for the placebo group; however, the difference in mortality was not statistically significant.

The report notes that patients who received remdesivir had a shorter time to recovery than those who received placebo.

"More pronounced benefit is likely to be seen when treating patients with less severe disease, ideally before they require invasive respiratory support".

The government today (May 26) announced that selected patients with severe Covid-19 will be allowed to be treated with remdesivir.

According to the study, the clinicians tracked patients' health status daily using an eight-point ordinal scale ranging from fully recovered to death.

Eric Topol, founder and director of the Scripps Research Translational Institute, said the study's results show the drug is "very safe and effective".

However, Topol said the data indicates remdesivir provides no benefits to patients with severe cases of Covid-19.

A study last month of more than 1,000 people severely sickened by the coronavirus found those who got the drug were discharged from the hospital several days earlier than those who got a placebo.

Hydroxychloroquine has been widely touted by President Trump as a potential treatment for Covid-19.

The first drug for coronavirus will be rolled out to seriously ill coronavirus patients, the government has announced.

Remdesivir, is a broad-spectrum antiviral which was developed by pharmaceutical company Gilead more than a decade ago to cure an unknown "Disease X" amid fears that a global pandemic was looming.

The drug remdesivir really accelerates recovery in patients with COVID-19, as scientists at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases in the USA found out.

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