Egypt’s Minister of Higher Education and Scientific Research and Acting Minister of Health and Population Khaled Abdel Ghaffar announced on Monday that the ministry has succeeded in providing the anti-coronavirus drug ‘Molnupiravir.’
According to Abdel Ghaffar, Egypt will be the first country in Africa and the Middle East and the fourth worldwide to provide this drug.
The minister thanked the Egyptian Drug Authority (EDA) for its efforts to expedite the licensing of five local companies to manufacture the drug after passing the precise laboratory tests that authorised the emergency use of the drug.
Moreover, Tamer Essam, the head of the Egyptian Drug Authority, said that the drug ‘Molnupiravir’ obtained an emergency use license from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the European Medicines Agency (EMA), as the first drug in the form of capsules taken orally to treat simple and medium cases of infection with the coronavirus.
He added that this drug helps in reducing the odds of hospitalisation by 50%.
He further noted that the EDA succeeded in shortening the time period for licensing the drug for emergency use to eight months by increasing working times and a good extrapolation of developments in clinical trials at the level of countries in the world.
Essam pointed out that local companies have so far succeeded in producing about 25,000 packages, with the availability of raw materials sufficient to manufacture about 150,000 more as part of the Egyptian state’s efforts to mitigate the negative effects of the pandemic.
Furthermore, Hossam Abdel Ghaffar, the Official Spokesperson for the Ministry of Health and Population, explained that the new drug has become available for use and will be added to the protocol for treating patients with the coronavirus, according to the vision of the scientific committee concerned with updating and developing the protocol, noting that the use of the new drug will be limited to hospitals and will not be offered in public pharmacies.