As COVID cases begin to spike in cities around the world, the FDA is making moves to help decrease the number of hospitalizations due to the virus. The Food and Drug Administration approved the very first pill to treat COVID-19 on Wednesday. According to CNN, Pfizer’s PAXLOVID pill can be used to treat coronavirus in individuals 12 and older before they are sick enough to go to the hospital.
“Today’s authorization of PAXLOVID represents another tremendous example of how science will help us ultimately defeat this pandemic, which, even two years in, continues to disrupt and devastate lives across the world,” Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla said in a statement.
“This breakthrough therapy, which has been shown to significantly reduce hospitalizations and deaths and can be taken at home, will change the way we treat COVID-19, and hopefully help reduce some of the significant pressures facing our healthcare and hospital systems.”
The pill is reportedly made up of a new antiviral drug called nirmatrelvir as well as an older antiviral drug called ritonavir. Together, the medications are reportedly meant to decrease an individual’s chances of hospitalization by 88% if taken within the first five days of symptoms.
In November, President Biden’s administration announced that the drug would “mark a significant step forward in our path out of the pandemic.” The administration reportedly purchased $5.295 billion worth of treatment courses for the pill.
“PAXLOVID is a potentially powerful tool in our fight against the virus, including the Omircon variant,” Biden stated while also stressing the importance of getting vaccinated.
It is unclear whether or not the pills will be sold over the counter or by prescription at this time.
“Pfizer stands ready to begin delivery in the U.S. immediately to help get PAXLOID into the hands of appropriate parents as quickly as possible,” Bourla said.
Want updates directly in your text inbox? Hit us up at 917-722-8057 or click here to join!