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UK Approves First COVID-19 Pill | Molnupiravir Already Helps Flu Patients—A Game Changer This Pandemic?

The U.K. becomes the first country to approve the first COVID-19 pill, also known as Merck’s coronavirus treatment. This new medicine is quite different from the current vaccines since you can easily swallow it just like other meds. 

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Health workers dressed in personal protective equipment (PPE) handle a coronavirus test at a drive-thru testing station at Cummings Park on March 23, 2020 in Stamford, Connecticut. Availability of protective clothing for medical workers has become a major issue as COVID-19 cases surge throughout the United States. The Stamford site is run by Murphy Medical Associates.

This announcement was confirmed on Thursday, Nov. 4. Involved U.K. regulators claimed that this molnupiravir is actually efficient when it comes to reducing COVID-19 hospitalization cases and preventing deaths in mildly to moderately infected individuals. 

They added that it is also safe to use. Sajid Javid, the British Health and Social Care Secretary, even called it a game-changer. 

“Today is a historic day for our country, as the UK is now the first country in the world to approve an antiviral that can be taken at home for Covid,” he said via NPR’s latest report. 

UK Approves First COVID-19 Pill

According to BBC News, molnupiravir was developed by Merck, Sharp, and Dohme (MSD), a U.S. drug company, together with the American health firm Ridgeback Biotherapeutics.

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Xenadrine EFX capsules are photographed on January 4, 2007 in Glendale, California. The marketers of four weight loss products, Xenadrine EFX, One-A-Day Weight Smart, CortiSlim and TrimSpa, were fined $25 million by the Federal Trade Commission on January 4 for making false advertising claims. The marketers of Xenadrine EFX, made by Nutraquest, Inc., were levied the largest fine.

Also Read: Study Says Screen Time of Teens Double to 7.7 Hours on Top of Online School During COVID-19 Pandemic

The United Kingdom confirmed that it had already purchased 480,000 courses. Health regulators added that the new COVID-19 medicines are expected to arrive in the country before November ends. 

However, the exact date is not yet revealed. U.K. authorities stated that the new drug would be provided to unvaccinated and vaccinated individuals. Patients need to intake the pill within five days of symptoms development. 

They need to do this twice a day so that Merck’s antiviral medicine would be effective. The new COVID-19 drug could also help other countries if it is proven effective. 

In other news, we reported that non-vaccinated patients are filling up ICUs, as claimed by respiratory therapists. This is just one of the health problems caused by the novel coronavirus. 

This is why many countries are still making efforts in hopes to neutralize COVID-19 completely. These include Ohio State University’s new COVID-19 breathalyzer.  

How Merck’s Antiviral Pill Works

The first COVID-19 pill works by targeting the enzyme that the novel coronavirus relies on to make copies. 

Merck’s antiviral drug will send errors into its genetic code, which is expected to prevent the deadly virus from duplicating itself. 

This means that molnupiravir can keep COVID-19 particles at low levels and reduce the severity of the disease. 

For more news updates about COVID-19 and other related health topics, always keep your tabs open here at TechTimes.  

Related Article: WHO Says This Bacteria Might Be Killing More Babies! Organization Says Vaccine Against GBS Urgently Needed

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Written by: Griffin Davis

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