The U.K. approves Merck’s COVID-19 antiviral pill, calling it a world first

The U.K. says its the first nation to approve an oral antiviral medication to battle COVID-19. “This is essential, since it suggests it can be administered beyond a healthcare facility setting, before COVID-19 has actually progressed to a severe stage,” said MHRA Chief Executive Dr. June Raine.

Justin Tallis/Pool/AFP via Getty Images

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Justin Tallis/Pool/AFP via Getty Images

The U.K. states its the first country to authorize an oral antiviral medication to combat COVID-19. “This is essential, because it indicates it can be administered outside of a medical facility setting, prior to COVID-19 has actually progressed to a serious stage,” stated MHRA Chief Executive Dr. June Raine.

Justin Tallis/Pool/AFP through Getty Images

Mercks antiviral tablet that fights COVID-19 in adults with the illness won its first authorization worldwide Thursday, as the U.K.s medical regulator revealed that the drug is “efficient and safe at decreasing the danger of hospitalization and death” in moderate to moderate cases. The drug is a “game changer,” British Health and Social Care Secretary Sajid Javid stated. Merck and Ridgeback Biotherapeutics developed the oral antiviral. “Today is a historical day for our nation, as the U.K. is now the first nation on the planet to authorize an antiviral that can be taken in your home for COVID-19,” Javid stated. The U.K.s authorization is based on scientific studies that showed the drug lowered the risk of hospitalization or death by about 50% for at-risk adults with moderate to moderate COVID-19 cases. The drug, which is called molnupiravir and will be offered under the name Lagevrio in the U.K., helps people deal with COVID-19 by disrupting the infections ability to replicate itself. “This prevents it from increasing, keeping infection levels low in the body and for that reason decreasing the intensity of the disease,” the U.K.s Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency, or MHRA, stated.

“Lagevrio is another therapeutic to include to our armory versus COVID-19,” said MHRA Chief Executive Dr. June Raine. The MHRA authorized the drug for people who have moderate or mild cases of COVID-19, along with at least one threat factor, such as obesity, heart illness or being 60 or older. COVID-19 rates are presently high in the U.K. with 1.1 million cases over the past 28 days– the second-most cases in the world (after the U.S.), according to Johns Hopkins University.

Mercks antiviral pill that fights COVID-19 in grownups with the disease won its very first authorization in the world Thursday, as the U.K.s medical regulator revealed that the drug is “safe and efficient at minimizing the danger of hospitalization and death” in moderate to moderate cases. “Today is a historic day for our nation, as the U.K. is now the first nation in the world to authorize an antiviral that can be taken at home for COVID-19,” Javid stated. The U.K.s authorization is based on medical studies that showed the drug reduced the danger of hospitalization or death by about 50% for at-risk adults with moderate to moderate COVID-19 cases.”Lagevrio is another healing to include to our armory against COVID-19,” stated MHRA Chief Executive Dr. June Raine.

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