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Remdesivir drug used by Trump is fully approved by FDA as coronavirus treatment

REMDESIVIR – an antiviral drug which President Donald Trump took during his coronavirus battle – has been fully approved as Covid treatment.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced on Thursday the drug can be used in coronavirus treatments.

Gilead Sciences, which manufactures the drug, said remdesivir will be used for patients who need to be hospitalized with coronavirus.

The antiviral drug is now the first fully approved Covid treatment in the United States.

Gilead CEO Daniel O'Day said in a statement: “Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, Gilead has worked relentlessly to help find solutions to this global health crisis."

“It is incredible to be in the position today, less than one year since the earliest case reports of the disease now known as COVID-19, of having an FDA-approved treatment in the U.S. that is available for all appropriate patients in need.”

Remdesivir is a drug used for the treatment of Ebola, Sars, and hepatitis C.

The drug is the result of more than a decade of research and has been tested for multiple potential applications over recent years.

Remdesivir was approved for emergency use in May and Gilead has been donating it since then.

After Trump was diagnosed with Covid earlier this month, White House doctor Sean Conley the president was given a dose of remdesivir.

Typical side effects of antiviral drugs include nausea and vomiting.

Remdesivir has been shown to shorten recovery time for severely ill coronavirus patients.

It’s given through an IV and interferes with the coronavirus strain’s ability to copy its genetic material.

After he was diagnosed with Covid earlier this month, Trump was rushed to Walter Reed medical center in Maryland.

There, he was given remdesivir and a cocktail of Regeneron’s experimental antibody, which is not available to the public. 

The president later credited the drug Regeneron with "curing" him and said he was seeking emergency approval for the drug.

"All I know is I took something – whatever the hell it was, I felt good very quickly," he said.

“I don’t know what it was, antibodies, I don’t know. I took it, I said I ‘felt like Superman.’ I said, ‘Let me at ’em!'”

Trump is one of less than 10 people who were able to access the Regeneron one under “compassionate use” rules to treat coronavirus without enrolling in any study.

The drug is not a cure, but experimental antibody treatments like the one Trump was given are among the most promising therapies being tested for treating and preventing coronavirus infections.

The antibody drugs, which work to help the immune system clear the virus, are still in testing, and their safety and effectiveness aren't yet known.

Trump said he wanted everyone who needed Regeneron to be able to get it for free.

In June, it was reported that the United States  secured nearly the entire world’s supply of coronavirus drug remdesivir for the next three months.

Gilead said the biopharmaceutical company has “entered into an agreement” with the US and will supply hospitals with the drug through September.

Dr Fauci says he is in favour of sharing remdesivir with the world as the Trump administration corners world supply

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