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Vietnam to approve Remdesivir for COVID-19 treatment: deputy health minister

Vietnam to approve Remdesivir for COVID-19 treatment: deputy health minister

Wednesday, August 04, 2021, 12:48 GMT+7
Vietnam to approve Remdesivir for COVID-19 treatment: deputy health minister
A laboratory technician shows Remdesivir, a drug used in the treatment of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), at Eva Pharma facility in Cairo, Egypt June 1, 2021. Photo: Reuters

The Vietnamese Ministry of Health is slated to authorize the inclusion of Remdesivir in the treatment of COVID-19 soon, national radio VOV quoted Deputy Minister Nguyen Truong Son as saying on Tuesday.

However, Son advised that Remdesivir must be prescribed by doctors at COVID-19 treatment facilities.

The deputy minister warned people against buying and using the drug without a doctor’s prescription.

The U.S. Food & Drug Administration approved Remdesivir for adults and pediatric patients, who are 12 years and older and weigh at least 40 kilograms, for the treatment of COVID-19 requiring hospitalization on October 22, 2020.

Remdesivir is an antiviral drug that can shorten the duration of treatment and accelerate recovery in patients with severe COVID-19 conditions. 

At the moment, the drug has been included in the treatment of the respiratory disease in 50 countries such as the U.S., Australia, Japan, Singapore, India, and many nations in Europe.

Vietnamese conglomerate Vingroup successfully negotiated an order of 500,000 vials of Remdesivir previously. 

The vials are manufactured by Cipla Ltd., a leading pharmaceutical company in India, under a non-exclusive voluntary licensing agreement from Gilead Sciences Inc., a research-based biopharmaceutical company in the U.S. 

The order is expected to be shipped to Vietnam this month so that the drug can be promptly presented to the Ministry of Health. 

The drug will be used for COVID-19 patients at moderate and more severity levels, Minister of Health Nguyen Thanh Long said at an online meeting on the COVID-19 pandemic prevention on Monday.

In the past, a number of coronavirus patients in Vietnam have been prescribed Remdesivir donated to the Southeast Asian country, according to Deputy Minister Son.

The drug is helpful to reduce the viral load in the body quickly, Son assessed.

The deputy minister added that Vietnam will import a number of other drugs that support the treatment of COVID-19 in the near future. 

The Ministry of Health registered 4,271 COVID-19 infections on Wednesday morning, raising the national tally to 174,461, with 50,831 recoveries and 2,071 deaths.

Vietnam has recorded 170,563 local infections in 62 out of its 63 provinces and cities since the fourth wave began on April 27.

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