Pfizer Reaches $5 Billion Deal With US For COVID-19 Treatment

The United States will pay pharmaceutical company Pfizer $5.29 billion for 10 million treatment courses of its potential COVID-19 treatment if the FDA authorizes it.

Pfizer requested the FDA to authorize the pill for emergency use on Tuesday.

“With more than 5 million deaths and countless lives impacted by this devastating disease globally, there is an urgent need for life-saving treatment options,” Pfizer’s CEO, Albert Bourla, said in a statement Tuesday. “We are moving as quickly as possible in our effort to get this potential treatment into the hands of patients, and we look forward to working with the US FDA on its review of our application, along with other regulatory agencies around the world.”

“The price for Pfizer’s potential treatment amounts to about $529 per course. The US has already agreed to pay roughly $700 per course of Merck’s drug for about 3.1 million treatments,” the New York Post reported. “Pfizer said Thursday the price being paid by the US government reflects the high number of treatment courses purchased through 2022.”

According to Pfizer, in studies the medicine “demonstrated an 89% reduction in risk of COVID-19-related hospitalization or death compared to placebo in non-hospitalized high-risk adults with COVID-19 within three days of symptom onset with similar results seen within five days of symptom onset.”

Pfizer has additionally reached an agreement with the UN-backed Medicines Patent Pool (MPP) that would allow generic medicine manufacturers to supply the medicine “to 95 countries, covering up to approximately 53% of the world’s population. This includes all low- and lower-middle-income countries and some upper-middle-income countries in Sub-Saharan Africa as well as countries that have transitioned from lower-middle to upper-middle-income status in the past five years. Pfizer will not receive royalties on sales in low-income countries and will further waive royalties on sales in all countries covered by the agreement while COVID-19 remains classified as a Public Health Emergency of International Concern by the World Health Organization.”

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