Merck’s antiviral COVID-19 pill approved by U.S. FDA for at-home use – National
Merck’s drug, molnupiravir, developed with Ridgeback Biotherapeutics, was shown to reduce hospitalizations and deaths by around 30 per cent in a clinical trial of high-risk individuals early in the course of the illness.
The agency authorized the oral drug for the treatment of mild-to-moderate COVID-19 in adults who are at risk for severe disease, and for whom alternative COVID-19 treatments are not accessible or clinically appropriate.
The U.S. government has a contract to buy as many as five million courses of the drug for $700 per course.
The drug is not authorized for use in patients younger than 18 because molnupiravir may affect bone and cartilage growth, the FDA said in a statement.
Merck Canada announces its antiviral COVID-19 treatment will be manufactured in Ontario