A study has found that a three-day course of remdesivir results in a lower risk for hospitalisation or death compared with a placebo. It was used in those at high risk from COVID-19 progression. Robert L. Gottlieb, from the Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas, conducted the randomised trial.
279 patients were randomly assigned to receive intravenous remdesivir at 200mg on day one and 100mg on days two and three,
The researchers found that just two patients in the remdesivir group were hospitalised from COVID-19.
In comparison, 15 in the placebo group were hospitalised.
There were no deaths by day 28.
The authors write: “In the campaign toward ending the COVID-19 pandemic, these data add yet another option to the armamentarium for the treatment of vulnerable patients who are at high risk for progression to severe COVID-19.”
The UK’s Medicines & Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) has already licensed the use of remdesivir.
It comes as the new Omicron variant is causing a rise in hospitalisations.
Fears for further restrictions coming in January have heightened once again after the UK reported 129,471 new cases of COVID-19.
The latest data showed the number of patients in hospitals in England with COVID-19 was 9,546, up from 6,902 a week ago.
But almost a third of the people in hospital with COVID-19 are reportedly in London.
Some hospitals in the capital are said to be cancelling non-urgent care due to the rising admissions and staff shortages.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson has said that “up to 90 percent” in intensive care have not had a booster jab.
Speaking to broadcasters, the prime minister said there are 2.4 million eligible double-jabbed people yet to take up the offer of a booster and that “the overwhelming majority” of those in a serious condition in hospital with COVID fall into this category.
He added: “I’m sorry to say this but the overwhelming majority of people who are currently ending up in intensive care in our hospitals are people who are not boosted.”