Remdesivir not a life-saving drug, does not reduce COVID-19 mortality: Govt
New Delhi, Apr 19: Remdesivir is not a life-saving drug and it cannot decrease the mortality rate, the government said on Monday amid mass hysteria for the anti-viral drug across India as many states reported a shortage.
Remdesivir should only be given to patients who are hospitalised, have a fall in oxygen saturation and have infiltrates on the chest X-ray or CT-scan.
The government experts also came out to caution people against irrational use of Remdesivir noting that no study in the world had shown it reduced mortality.
"Remdesivir is only to be used in moderately ill COVID patients who are hospitalised, and have very low oxygen levels and lung damage. It is of no use in mild patients. In fact, UK has only given paracetamol, hydration and multi-vitamins to mild patients and that's the way management," AIIMS-New Delhi Director Randeep Guleria said, noting that Remdesivir was no magic bullet and this anti-viral injection was not meant to be taken at home.
The comments come amid several states reporting a shortage of the Remdesivir drug, injection and oxygen cylinders in order to treat Covid-19 patients. In view of the overwhelming demand, drug manufacturers in the country also recently slashed the price of the Remdesivir injections after government's intervention.