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Remdesivir does not help hospitalised COVID-19 patients: WHO study

IANS Oct 17, 2020

Anti-viral drug remdesivir has little or no effect in the recovery and mortality of hospitalised COVID-19 patients, said a World Health Organisation (WHO) study, giving a big blow to the hope that the drug from US-based Gilead Sciences raised in combating the pandemic.

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The WHO said that the Solidarity Therapeutics Trial produced "conclusive evidence" on the effectiveness of repurposed drugs for COVID-19 in record time -- just six months. Interim results from the world's largest randomised control trial on COVID-19 therapeutics have been uploaded as preprint at medRxiv, the WHO said, adding that the results are under review for publication in a medical journal.

The study, which spans more than 30 countries, looked at the effects of these treatments on overall mortality, initiation of ventilation, and duration of hospital stay in hospitalised patients. The results from the study indicate that remdesivir, hydroxychloroquine, lopinavir/ritonavir and interferon regimens appeared to have little or no effect on 28-day mortality or the in-hospital course of COVID-19 among hospitalised patients. "These remdesivir, hydroxychloroquine, lopinavir and interferon regimens appeared to have little or no effect on hospitalised COVID-19, as indicated by overall mortality, initiation of ventilation and duration of hospital stay," said the study.

The study conducted in 405 hospitals across 30 countries involved 11,266 adults. Remdesivir was only drug that received Emergency Use Authorisation for COVID-19 from the US Food and Drug Administration.

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