The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) took steps on Friday to expand the use of the antiviral remdesivir to treat Covid-19 in mild and moderate cases.
Remdesivir, sold under the brand name Veklury, received an emergency use authorization in the US in May 2020 for use in people hospitalized with severe Covid-19. In October 2020, the FDA approved the drug for anyone age 12 and older who was hospitalized.
Now, the agency has expanded approval to include people age 12 and older who test positive for Covid-19 and are not in hospital, have mild to moderate illness and are at high risk of developing a serious condition. It also expanded to allow its use in children under 12 who meet the same criteria.
These patients can receive remdesivir intravenously for three days.
“Today’s actions strengthen the therapeutic arsenal to treat Covid-19 and respond to the rise of the Omicron variant,” said Dr. Patrizia Cavazzoni, director of the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research.
“Today’s actions offer adult and pediatric patients with mild to moderate Covid-19 who are at high risk of severe Covid-19 a treatment option they could receive outside of a traditional hospital setting, including in qualified nursing facilities, home health settings and outpatient facilities such as infusion centers,” he continued.
The FDA further noted that remdesivir is not a substitute for vaccination to prevent severe cases of Covid-19 and complications such as hospitalization and death.
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Reference: CNN Brasil