Dec 14, 2021 - Health

Pfizer: COVID pill reduces risk by 89% in vulnerable adults

Medicine pills are seen with Pfizer logo.

Photo: Soumyabrata Roy/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Pfizer released new data Tuesday morning confirming Paxlovid, its oral antiviral pill for COVID, reduced the risk of hospitalization or death by 89% in high-risk adults.

Driving the news: The company said it shared the Phase 2/3 data with the FDA as part of its ongoing rolling submission for Emergency Use Authorization.

Why it matters: Oral antiviral drugs designed to prevent or treat COVID-19 could be key pandemic-fighting tools.

The details: In November, Pfizer released interim data for the antiviral that found an 89% reduction in high-risk patients.

  • Pfizer said there is an ongoing interim analysis of a second study of the pill which has so far shown a 70% reduction in hospitalization among standard-risk adults.
  • A key FDA advisory panel endorsed an antiviral pill developed by Merck and Ridgeback Biotherapeutics in late November.

What they're saying: "Emerging variants of concern, like Omicron, have exacerbated the need for accessible treatment options for those who contract the virus, and we are confident that, if authorized or approved, this potential treatment could be a critical tool to help quell the pandemic," said Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla in a statement.

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