Left Menu
Development News Edition

S.Korea to start talks on COVID-19 drug remdesivir purchases in August

South Korea has started distributing stocks of the COVID-19 treatment remdesivir that have been donated by Gilead Sciences Inc and plans to begin talks to purchase more supplies in August, its disease control agency said on Wednesday.

Reuters | Seoul | Updated: 01-07-2020 14:14 IST | Created: 01-07-2020 13:39 IST
S.Korea to start talks on COVID-19 drug remdesivir purchases in August
Representative image Image Credit: ANI

South Korea has started distributing stocks of the COVID-19 treatment remdesivir that have been donated by Gilead Sciences Inc and plans to begin talks to purchase more supplies in August, its disease control agency said on Wednesday. It is the first country to disclose a timeline for talks with Gilead. The drugmaker said this week it has priced remdesivir at $390 per vial in developed countries and agreed to allocate nearly all of its supply of the drug to the United States over the next three months.

One of the few treatments shown to alter the course of COVID-19, remdesivir is expected to be in high demand. The intravenously administered medicine has won emergency-use authorization in several countries and full approval in Japan after a clinical trial showed it helped shorten hospital stays. Only patients severely ill with COVID-19 are eligible for remdesivir and South Korea currently has 33 such patients, the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC) said.

KCDC director Jeong Eun-kyeong told a briefing that patients who developed symptoms in less than 10 days and were suffering from pneumonia and a shortage of oxygen would be considered eligible. A domestic panel of experts has found that anti-viral drugs like remdesivir are more effective if given in the early stages of the disease, she added. The KCDC did not disclose how many doses have been donated by the U.S. firm.

South Korea will consider whether remdesivir should be covered by national health insurance after the purchase negotiations in August, said Jeong. Based on current treatment patterns, a course of remdesivir equates to $2,340 per patient.

South Korea has been battling small but steady outbreaks of the new coronavirus, with 51 new cases reported as of Tuesday, bringing the country's total to 12,850 cases with 282 deaths.


TRENDING

OPINION / BLOG / INTERVIEW

Why COVID-19 is unstoppable in USA despite it being ranked at the top of GHS Index?

Several worst-hit countries such as Italy, France, Spain, the UK, Canada, and Russia have peaked COVID-19 cases in April. Almost all of them have gradually flattened the curve. However, the USA is setting new daily records of infections tha...

COVID-19 seems cooking biggest ever global scam

The increasing number of corruption cases on COVID-19 funds from throughout the world and involvement of high profile persons indicate that the countries cant ignore corruption in their pandemic response programs. This has generated the nee...

Health Management Information Systems lack holistic, integrated, and pandemic resilient character

Being a part of the United Nations system, the World Health Organization WHO deserves its share of rebuke for its alleged failure issue COVID-19 health emergency alerts on appropriate time. However, the pandemic has also exposed loopholes i...

Pride in the time of coronavirus: a welcome move online?

This year is different in many ways not least as celebrations are also taking place against the dramatic backdrop of a global health crisis and a resurgence in grassroots activism following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis. ...

Videos

Latest News

Mylab launches machine to automate molecular diagnostic tests including those for COVID-19

Pune-based Mylab Discovery Solutions on Tuesday launched a machine Compact XL to automate the manual processes of molecular diagnostic tests, including RT-PCR tests for COVID-19. Compact XL is a compact bench-top machine that will automate ...

5 NDRF personnel test COVID-19 positive in Mizoram; tally rises to 197

At least six people, including five National Disaster Response Force NDRF personnel, have tested positive for novel coronavirus in Mizoram, taking the states COVID-19 tally to 197, an official said on Tuesday. Of the 49 samples tested, thes...

Google rebrands social network Google Plus as Google Currents

Tech giant Googles social media network Google Plus has officially gone almost a year after the company had shut down its personal accounts.According to The Verge, Google recently announced that it is replacing the social network meant for ...

Vietnam jails Facebook user for eight years over 'anti-state' posts

A court in Vietnam on Tuesday sentenced a man to eight years in prison after finding him guilty of uploading anti-state posts on his Facebook account, the security ministry said. Despite sweeping economic reform and increasing openness to s...

Give Feedback