One in three COVID-19 patients in South Korea show signs of improvement with remdesivir
SEOUL (SOUTH KOREA) – One in three South Korean patients, who were in a serious condition with COVID-19 showed improvement after being given Gilead Sciences Inc’s antiviral remdesivir, health authorities said.
They added that more research was needed to conclude if the improvement could be attributed to the drug or to other factors such as patients’ immunity and other therapies, they said.
Remdesivir has garnered attention in the global battle against COVID-19 after the intravenously administered medicine helped shorten hospital recovery times during a US clinical trial.
The drug’s name has been added by several countries including South Korea to the list of treating the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, as no approved vaccine has been found yet.
In its latest update on the drug, Gilead said on Friday an analysis showed remdesivir helped bring down the risk of death in critically ill COVID-19 patients but also alerted that rigorous clinical trials were needed to come to a conclusion about its benefits.
The Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention brought forth on Saturday results from a first group of 27 patients given remdesivir in different hospitals.
KCDC deputy director Kwon Jun-wook told a briefing that nine of the patients showed signs of an improvement in their condition, while 15 showed no change, and three worsened.
The result had yet to be compared with a control group, according to him and more analysis was needed to conclude remdesivir’s benefit.
In June, South Korea asked Gilead for enough supply of its drug to treat more than 5,000 COVID-19 patients as part of preparing for a possible second wave of infections.
South Korea reported 62 new cases as of Sunday, bringing the country’s total to 13,479 cases with 289 deaths.
(Photos syndicated via Reuters)
This story has been edited by BH staff and is published from a syndicated field.