A anti-viral drug treatment that appears to shorten recovery time for people with Covid-19 is being made available on the NHS.
Health Minister Robin Swann has welcomed the announcement today (Tuesday) that the drug Remdesivir will be available for the treatment of the coronavirus.
Remdesivir is an innovative drug that is currently undergoing clinical trials around the world, including the UK.
International studies show the drug can shorten recovery time from Covid-19 by about four days.
The Minister said: “The news that patients in Northern Ireland will have access to Remdesivir through the Early Access to Medicines Scheme (EAMS) is a positive step in the fightback against Covid-19.
“It is only a few short months ago that we were first faced with this previously unknown virus. Amazing progress has been made in producing and delivering this anti-viral in a short timescale.”
The drug will be available to patients who meet certain clinical criteria to support their recovery in hospital.
Trusts in Northern Ireland will be able to apply for access to the treatment for eligible patients.
In conclusion the Minister said: “Science has been at the forefront in these unprecedented times and it is through science that we will see breakthroughs in treatments for Covid-19.
“Patient safety will remain a priority and we will monitor the success of Remdesivir through the early access scheme and clinical trials to ensure the best results for all patients.”