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Merck Antiviral Pill’s Clinical Trial Success Is ‘Good News,’ Fauci Says


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Merck Antiviral Pill’s Clinical Trial Success Is ‘Good News,’ Fauci Says

Health officials said the drug could provide an effective way to treat Covid-19, but stressed that vaccines remained the best tool to prevent infections.

“The news of the efficacy of this particular antiviral is obviously very good news. The company, when they briefed us last night, had mentioned that they will be submitting their data to the F.D.A. imminently. The data are impressive. There was a 50 percent diminution — of importance is that in the placebo group, there were eight deaths and in the treatment group, there were no deaths. That’s also very important, and very good news. We always hesitate to make any timelines. The F.D.A. will look at the data and in their usual, very efficient and effective way, will examine the data as quickly as they possibly can. And then it will be taken from there because once a recommendation is made, then we go through the same process of getting the recommendation for its usage through the C.D.C.” “The federal government has contracted to purchase 1.7 million doses to make this therapy available. The government also has an option for some additional doses. If approved, I think the right way to think about this is, this is a potential additional tool in our toolbox to protect people from the worst outcomes of Covid. But I think it’s really important to remember that vaccination, as we’ve talked about today, remains far and away our best tool against Covid-19. It can prevent you from getting Covid in the first place, and we want to prevent infections, not just wait to treat them once they happen.”

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