The federal government has reduced the price of Remdesivir, an antiviral drug approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat critically ill Coronavirus patients, to Rs. 8,400 from Rs. 10,873.
It was revealed by the Special Assistant to Prime Minister (SAPM) on Health, Dr. Faisal Sultan, during a joint media briefing along with Information Minister, Shibli Faraz, after the meeting of the federal cabinet held in Islamabad on Tuesday.
While explaining the pricing mechanism for Remdesivir, Dr. Sultan said:
At present, each 100mg injection of Remdesivir is being sold for Rs. 10,873. However, Prime Minister Imran Khan has decided to decrease the price to Rs. 8,400 to ensure that it would become affordable for all serious Coronavirus patients.
A day earlier Ministry of National Health Services (NHS) had forwarded a summary to the cabinet secretariat seeking a reduction in the price of Remdesivir injections.
Remdesivir is a product of Gilead Sciences, an American biotechnology company. Gilead Sciences had originally manufactured Remdesivir as a general antiviral drug.
Earlier this year in May, FDA had granted Remdesivir the emergency use authorization (EUA) status during the peak of the Coronavirus pandemic.
Besides the US and Pakistan, Remdesivir has been used to treat critically ill COVID-19 patients in India, Singapore, Japan, Australia, and Europe.