Omicron Variant: European Medicines Agency Approves Pfizer Covid Pill For Emergency Use

The Hague: European Union’s drug regulator the European Medicines Agency on Thursday approved the member states to use Pfizer’s new Covid pill as an emergency measure to curb a new wave of the disease.Also Read – Hyderabad Reports 4 Cases of Omicron, Total 7 Cases of New Covid Variant Now in Telangana

“The medicine, which is not yet authorised in the EU, can be used to treat adults with Covid-19 who do not require supplemental oxygen and who are at increased risk of progressing to severe disease,” the European Medicines Agency (EMA) said in a statement. Also Read – Bengal’s Omicron Child Patient Now Tests Covid Negative

Earlier this week, the US pharma giant had said that the pill — a new type of treatment that should withstand the new Omicron variant — reduced hospitalisations and deaths in at-risk people by almost 90 percent. Also Read – Travellers Attention! France Bans Tourists From UK Amid Omicron Scare – 5 Key Points

“The EMA issued this advice to support national authorities who may decide on possible early use of the medicine… for example in emergency use settings, in the light of rising rates of infection and deaths due to COVID-19 across the EU,” the European Medicines Agency was quoted as saying by AFP.

Known as Paxlovid, the treatment is a combination of a new molecule, PF-07321332, and HIV antiviral ritonavir, that are taken as separate tablets.

“Paxlovid should be administered as soon as possible after diagnosis of COVID-19 and within five days of the start of symptoms,” the EMA said, adding that the pills should then be taken for five more days.

The EMA said that the most common side effects were a disturbance of the sense of taste, diarrhoea and vomiting. The drug should not be used by pregnant women, and breastfeeding should be interrupted while it is being taken, it added.


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