The United States Food and Drug Agency (FDA, for its acronym in English) granted this Saturday the emergency authorization to Regeneron, the drug against COVID-19 that the American president received in October, Donald trump, to treat the disease. The authorization limits the use of the drug to people over 12 years old that they have given positive for coronavirus and be in risk of developing a severe case of the disease, including those 65 years of age and older, as well as those with certain chronic medical conditions.
This is because the treatment, based on a cocktail of monoclonal antibodies casirivimab and imdevimab, has shown that its early application improves the condition of patients. Instead of waiting for the body to develop its own protective immune response, the drug mimics the body’s natural defenses, with which doctors hope to avoid many hospitalizations. “It was shown that almost irivimab and imdevimab, administered together, reduce hospitalization related to COVID-19 or emergency room visits in patients at high risk of disease progression within 28 days of treatment compared to placebo“, explains the FDA in a statement.
Shortly after confirming her infection in early October, Trump received an 8 gram dose of this Regeneron treatment, even though its use was not cleared by the FDA. After overcoming the disease, the president affirmed through videos and social networks that this treatment was the main responsible for his improvement, defining it not as “therapy”, but as a “cure”.
Free access to the drug
When leaving the hospital, Trump promised that he would guarantee free access to this drug. The company has received more than 500 million dollars from the US federal government (approximately 421.7 million euros) and the first 300,000 doses will be free in the United States, although Americans could pay depending on their insurance to have it applied, as it must be used in a hospital.
According to company calculations, end of november they will have enough dose for 80,000 people and they will be able to treat 200,000 patients at the beginning of January already 300,000 at the end of the month, since they have reached an agreement with the Swiss company Roche for the production of the drug.