US authorises COVID-19 therapy as G20 countries push for global access to vaccines

US authorises COVID-19 therapy as G20 countries push for global access to vaccines

- REGEN-COV2 is a combination of two lab-made antibodies produced by drug maker Regeneron

- It is the same therapy that was used by President Trump when he contracted COVID-19 about two months ago

- Trump gave a wide berth the G20 meeting on Saturday where leaders pushed for equitable and affordable access to vaccines if approved

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The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved emergency use of two monoclonal antibody therapies to be used in treating COVID-19 patients.

US authorises COVID-19 therapy as G20 countries push for global access to vaccines
View of Corporate and Research and Development Headquarter. Photo: Getty Images.
Source: UGC

According to the FDA, studies showed REGEN-COV2, a combination of two lab-made antibodies reduced instances where patients developed serious illness from COVID-19, thus helping in preventing and reducing hospitalisation.

In a separate story, reported Regeneron COVID-19 antibody, made by Regeneron, was the therapy that US president Donald Trump used when he tested positive for COVID-19 about two months ago.

Stephen M. Hahn, FDA boss said the therapy will go along way in easing the burden on health care systems in countries that have been badly hit by the pandemic.

"Authorising therapies may help patients and alleviate the burden on our health care system and allow health care providers to focus on the sickest COVID-19 patients," Hahn said.

When Trump fell ill and was admitted at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, he said he was the one who requested for the treatment despite fears that it had not been approved.

The treatment was described as "magical" by many since Trump was discharged from the hospital after about four days despite being admitted after his blood oxygen levels dropped.

"This is what I want for everybody, I want everybody to be given the same treatment as their president," said Trump who claimed he felt more powerful and younger than before after the treatment

The FDA envisions production of about 80,000 doses by the end of 2020 and 300,000 by the end of January 2021.

News of approval of the new dose came about a week after another similar drug developed by Eli Lilly was given a nod for emergency use by the FDA.

Meanwhile, leaders drawn from the G20 met on Saturday, November 21, and pushed for equitable and affordable vaccine once doses have been approved for use.

“We must work to create affordable and equitable access to these tools for all," said Saudi Arabia King Salman who hosted the virtual summit.

Trump who was expected yo attend the meeting gave it a wide berth. He was seen in a golf field playing his favourite sport.

US authorises COVID-19 therapy as G20 countries push for global access to vaccines
A picture of Trump playing golf. Photo: Getty Images.
Source: Getty Images

Since the November 3 General Election, Trump has spoken soo little about the pandemic that continues to ravage the US.

As of Sunday, November 22, at least 12,450,666 people in the US had contracted the disease out of which 261,790 had died while 7,403,847 had recovered.

US drugmaker Pfizer and its European partner BioNTech announced last week they were seeking FDA approval for their vaccine which they said had 95% efficiency.

Moderna, another vaccine maker said its dose had 94.5% efficiency and hopes to get FDA approval for emergency use.

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