Emergency use of Remdesivir okayed; Cipla and Hetro to produce the drug by June end

Mumbai: In a major breakthrough, the Drug Controller General of India has authorised emergency use of Remdesivir vials to treat Covid 19 patients in Maharashtra. Two Indian companies -- Cipla and Hetro, which have been approved by the US based Gillyard -- will start production by June end and the drug will be priced in the range of Rs 4000-7,000 per vial.

Public Health Minister Rajesh Tope told FPJ, "Gillyard has not yet completed clinical trials for application of Remdesivir; therefore, the DCGI has authorised it for emergency use only. The state government will supply the drug, which is life saving and anti-viral, in rural areas.’’

Further, the minister said, Itolizumab, which is a product of pharma major Biocon, will also be used to treat Covid patients in the state. Itolizumab is equivalent to Tocilizumab which is not available in the market.

According to Tope, the Indian Council of Medical Research has also allowed Elisa antibody test and the Antigen Diagnosis test. '‘Elisa antibody tests will be conducted on front liners who are in the field and exposed to Covid patients. The Antigen test will be carried out on high risk patients based on swab and not blood,’’ he noted.

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