The number of COVID 19 patients in India is inching closer to two lakhs mark. The daily increase in the number of patients is 8k+ and that figure has forced the government to take drastic measures.
Remdesivir: A temporary solution
Remdesivir is an anti-viral drug used for a range of symptoms. It was first developed to treat Hepatitis C and was used in treating Ebola too but failed to pass the clinical trials. The drug decreases recovery time in patients suffering from COVID 19. Developed by Gilead Sciences Inc., the drug has been approved by FDA in the USA, South Korea, India, Japan and the UK for treating severe symptoms or in emergency cases.
Remdesivir does not guarantee 100% success, it has been ineffective on occasions and side effects range from nausea, sweating to blood pressure and liver inflammation. Remdesivir is far from a solution to COVID 19 virus and is only useful in treating symptoms.
Patients having liver ailments will be kept out of the treatment because Remdesivir tends to increase production of liver enzymes and can be fatal too. The drug in Phase 3 will be tested on hospitalized patients to establish a standardized response of the drug on the coronavirus.
Patients administered with more than 10 doses of the drug have only shown modest recovery and adverse effects thus The Drug Controller of India has allowed administering till 5 doses in emergency cases.
In India, Gilead has given voluntary license for the production of Remdesivir to Cipla, Jubilant Life Sciences, Hetero Drugs, and Mylan with no royalty payment till an alternative drug is found or until the World Health Organization removes COVID pandemic from ‘Public Health Emergency of International Concern’ category.
The recovery rate in India currently stands at 48% with patients taking 10-15 days to recover. The mortality rate is only 2.82% which is far below the global average.