Health Canada Authorise Use of Drug to Treat Covid-19

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Sarah Peddie

Health Canada has now authorised the use of the drug remdesivir to treat people with the most severe cases of coronavirus in the country, but there is a limited supply.

The drug will go by the brand name of Veklury and it is produced by Gilead Sciences Canada. However, top doctors in Canada say that there is a limited supply. 

On Tuesday (28 July) it was announced that the drug could be used on adults and adolescents over the age of 12 with body weight of at least 40kg. 

The drug has not been authorised to use on pregnant women or children under the age of 12.

A study run by the US National Institutes of Health tested remdesivir against the usual care for coronavirus on over 1,000 patients with Covid-19 around the world. 

It was found that the drug reduced the time it took for patients to recover by 31 percent which was 11 days on average compared to the usual 15 days for those who were given the normal care. 

The drug is administered and used only within healthcare facilities where patients can be closely monitored. 

It has also been authorised to use in emergencies in the US, Europe, Australia, Singapore and Japan.

The patients who have been treated with the drug in Canada have been part of the Special Access Programme.

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