Coronavirus: 1 in 3 South Korean Covid-19 patients improve with remdesivir drug

SEOUL – One in three South Korean patients seriously ill with Covid-19 showed an improvement in their condition after being given Gilead Sciences’s antiviral remdesivir, health authorities said.

More research was needed to determine if the improvement was attributable to the drug or other factors such as patients’ immunity and other therapies, they said.

Remdesivir has been at the forefront of the global battle against Covid-19 after the intravenously administered medicine helped shorten hospital recovery times in a US clinical trial.

Several countries including South Korea have added the drug to the list of treatment for the disease caused by the novel coronavirus. There is no approved vaccine for it.

In its latest update on the drug, Gilead said on Friday (July 10) an analysis showed remdesivir helped reduce the risk of death in severely ill Covid-19 patients but cautioned that rigorous clinical trials were needed to confirm the benefit.

The Korea Centres for Disease Control and Prevention reported on Saturday (July 11) results from a first group of 27 patients given remdesivir in different hospitals.

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