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Pfizer Oral Tablets Get US Green Light For Home Use-Doha News

Studies have shown that oral medications are effective in preventing the death and hospitalization of high-risk patients.

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved the first oral tablet for Covid-19 to prevent hospitalization and death of high-risk patients. This move occurs as coronavirus cases continue to increase around the world and new Omicron variants spread.

US President Joe Biden welcomed the approval of the pill on Wednesday, saying state health officials plan to have 250,000 treatment courses by January.

At present, it is unclear when the drug will be available in other parts of the world and whether it will be rolled out in Qatar.

The drug, Paxrovid, is especially important in the ongoing battle with the pandemic, as it is faster, cheaper, and easier to use. Previously, all drugs approved for Covid-19 required IV or injection. However, Paxrovid is given orally.

“It checks every box,” said Dr. Gregory Poland of the US-based Mayo Clinic. “We have found that the risk of hospitalization and death is reduced by 90% in the high-risk group, which is surprising.”

According to Pfizer clinical trial data, the drug’s antiviral therapy is also 90% effective in preventing hospitalization and death in high-risk patients. This includes the elderly and those with a history of obesity or heart disease.

The drug is also effective against Omicron, the fastest-growing variant to date.

Pfizer’s drugs are part of a family of antiviral drugs known as protease inhibitors. It works by blocking important enzymes required for viral growth in the human body. The same concept was used to revolutionize the treatment of HIV and hepatitis C.

The FDA has approved the pill for patients who are positive on the test and have a prescription from a certified physician. It also allowed medication for emergency use in case of mild to moderate illness for patients of 12 years, although they must weigh at least 40 kg.

Patients at high risk of developing severe Covid-19 can also receive this treatment.

Despite the many advantages, Paxlovid has its drawbacks. For one thing, it has proven to be effective only when used within 5 days of experiencing symptoms. Experts are worried that it may be too late to use the pill once a positive test is confirmed, due to the lack of accessible test supplies and the narrow time frame.

Andrew Pekosi, a virologist at Johns Hopkins University, said:

Pfizer is not the only company involved in the research and development of medicines to treat the coronavirus.

Merck & Co also manufactures rival pills currently under consideration by the FDA. Effective against varieties like Omicron, but in stark contrast to Paxrovid, with an efficiency of 30 percent.

Pfizer says it is ready to begin immediate delivery in the United States and has raised its production forecast to 120 million courses of treatment.

The US government receives 10 million courses of pills at a price of $ 530 per course.

Here in Qatar, oral medications have not yet been deployed, but authorities have previously followed the FDA’s decision.

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