Thursday, January 20, 2022

Canada: How will newly approved antiviral treatment affect the Omicron wave?

CBC News Channel on Youtube shows that deputy chief public health officer Dr. Howard Njoo and Health Canada's chief medical adviser, Dr. Supriya Sharma, lay out how significantly Pfizer's new antiviral drug, Paxlovid, will affect Canadians in the midst of the Omicron wave.

A "deputy" is a person whose immediate superior is a senior figure within an organization and who is empowered to act as a substitute for this superior.

More Information about PAXLOVID:

Company name: Pfizer Canada ULC
Ingredients: nirmatrelvir and ritonavir
Date of approval: January 17, 2022

Before using it, you could contact your healthcare professional to help you answer questions about what the product is used for, dosage, warnings, proper use and side effects.

The Regulatory Decision is Health Canada’s decision for the product seeking market authorization. There is a purpose of the submission and the reason for the decision.
Public Advisories and Health Product Risk Communications are 2 important ways that Health Canada communicates safety issues. They are published when Health Canada has important updates or other information to share about the product, such as new approvals, information on shortages, or risks.

Health Canada certainly authorized PAXLOVID(TM) for patients with mild to moderate COVID-19 at high risk of developing serious disease.

In its statement on January 17, 2022, Health Canada has authorized the combination of 2 antiviral drugs, nirmatrelvir and ritonavir (brand name PAXLOVIDTM), to treat adults with mild to moderate COVID-19 who are at high risk of progressing to serious disease, including hospitalization or death. The active ingredient nirmatrelvir in PAXLOVID(TM) works by stopping the virus from replicating.

PAXLOVID(TM) is the first COVID-19 therapy that can be taken at home ( not in a hospital or healthcare setting). The drug is intended for use as soon as possible after diagnosis of COVID-19 and within 5 days of the start of symptoms. The treatment consists of two tablets of nirmatrelvir and one tablet of ritonavir taken together by mouth twice per day for five days.

It seems that the benefits of Paxlovid outweigh the risks (for most patients).

No drug (including PAXLOVID) is a substitute for vaccination. Vaccination remains the most important tool in preventing serious illness from COVID-19 infection.

Paxlovid reduces rate of hospitalization and death among high-risk COVID-19 patients, Pfizer says.

Pfizer's Paxlovid is really an oral antiviral treatment prescribed by a doctor and administered in pill form. It is designed to help the body fight off the SARS-CoV-2 virus, reduce symptoms from a dangerous infection and shorten the period of illness.

After months of clinical trials, Pfizer reported in November that Paxlovid reduced the risk of hospitalization or death by an impressive 89 per cent compared to a placebo in non-hospitalized high-risk adults with COVID-19.

Paxlovid is really meant to be taken as 30 pills over five days. Patients take three pills at a time: two of nirmatrelvir and one of ritonavir.

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