The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved the use of COVID-19 pills from the pharmaceutical company Pfizer. This is reported on the firm’s website.
According to a statement from Pfizer, the drug, called Paxlovid, can be used to treat a mild to moderate coronavirus infection.
“Pfizer is ready to begin shipping the drug to the United States immediately to get Paxlovid into the hands of appropriate patients as quickly as possible,” said Pfizer Chairman and CEO Albert Burla.
It is noted that the drug is intended for adults and adolescents ages 12 and older who are at high risk of progression to severe disease, including hospitalization or death.
Side effects from the pills include impaired taste, diarrhea, high blood pressure and muscle pain.
Paxlovid reduces the risks of hospitalization or death from COVID-19 by 89 percent (within three days of symptom onset) and 88 percent (within five days of symptom onset), according to studies.
In addition, recent laboratory data show that the drug remains effective against the Omicron strain, according to Pfizer.
According to a company statement, in November, Pfizer entered into an agreement with the U.S. government to supply 10 million courses of treatment with the drug, with delivery to be completed in 2022.