Australia approves Gilead’s remdesivir for COVID-19 treatment

FILE PHOTO: Gilead Sciences Inc pharmaceutical company is seen during the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in California

SYDNEY: Australia has granted provisional approval to Gilead’s remdesivir as the first treatment option for COVID-19 in the country, the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) said on Friday (Jul 10).

The approval is for adults and adolescent patients with severe COVID-19 symptoms and have been hospitalised, the Australian regulator said.

Remdesivir has become the treatment of choice for many countries against severely ill COVID-19 patients after the intravenously-administered medicine helped shorten hospital recovery times in a clinical trial.

The Australian approval broadens the use of remdesivir around the world – the United States has cleared it for emergency use and the European Commission has conditionally approved the treatment.

It is also approved as a COVID-19 therapy in Japan, Taiwan, India, Singapore and the United Arab Emirates.

Australia has been struggling to contain a COVID-19 outbreak in the country’s second most populous city and on Friday said it would halve the number of citizens allowed to return home from overseas each week.

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