Egypt approves COVID-19 pill Molnupiravir for emergency use
The Asharq Al-Awsat reported that Egypt’s drug authority said on Monday, Egypt approved Merck & Co’s COVID-19 pill Molnupiravir for emergency use, adding that the pill would be locally produced.
The Egyptian Drug Authority (EDA) said in a statement that the drug will initially be manufactured by five local companies, to be joined later by several other firms.
Molnupiravir is the first antiviral pill licensed for treating COVID-19 patients who are at high risk of developing severe disease and reducing the risk of getting hospitalized by the half.
The EDA said in its statement that it will only be allowed inside hospitals to make sure it is taken under full medical supervision and in accordance with the standards set by the relevant scientific committees to ensure continuous therapeutic follow-up.
Egypt has become the first country in the Middle East to issue an emergency use license for a medicine.
Separately, five-year old children are now eligible to receive the Pfizer vaccine as authorities expand the vaccination campaign to reach all age groups.
Health Ministry Spokesperson Hossam Abdel Ghaffar noted an increase in the COVID-19 cases in Egypt, urging people to receive the vaccine and to abide by the preventative precautions.
The Asharq Al-Awsat noted that Egypt reported 1,603 new coronavirus infections on Sunday, upping the total since the beginning of the outbreak to 410,098.