Israel received the first shipment of Pfizer’s anti-Covid pill on Thursday. It is crucial, according to Prime Minister Nafatali Bennett, to tackle the Omicron threat.
“The drugs have arrived in Israel quickly thanks to our swift action,” Bennett added, “and will help us overcome the looming Omicron wave.” On Monday, the United States Food and Drug Administration (USFDA) gave the green light to Pfizer’s Paxlovid pill.
The drug has been shown in trials to reduce Covid-related hospitalizations and deaths by 88% in people at risk. The drugs have arrived in Israel at a time when coronavirus infections are on the rise. Health officials reported more than 4,000 new cases on Wednesday, the highest number since September.
Experts say oral medications prevent the virus from replicating and should survive the variants. Gilead’s synthetic antibodies or antiviral remdesivir, both given by infusion, have been the main therapy for Covid until recently. The United States spent $ 5.3 billion on 10 million treatments of Pfizer’s new drug, as well as $ 2.2 billion on drugs from competitor Merck, which appear to be less successful.
The European Union pharmaceutical authority has also cleared member states to use Pfizer’s Covid drugs as an emergency remedy before official authorization.
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