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Glenmark Pharmaceuticals on Saturday announced the launch of its antiviral drug Favipiravir, to treat mild to moderate COVID-19 cases in India. The drug will be available as a prescription-based medication for ₹103 per tablet.
Backed by strong clinical evidence, the Mumbai-based firm received the manufacturing and marketing approval from India's drug regulator on Friday, after the evaluation of data and in consultation with the Subject Expert Committee.
The tablets are being produced at its Baddi facility in Himachal Pradesh and will be available both through hospitals and the retail channel, a statement released by the company read.
The drug will be used for emergency cases, with the prior consent of the patient.
Commenting on the development, Glenn Saldanha, Chairman and Managing Director of Glenmark Pharmaceuticals Ltd. said that this approval comes at a time when cases in India are spiralling like never before, putting tremendous pressure on the healthcare system.
"We hope the availability of an effective treatment such as 'FabiFlu' will considerably help assuage this pressure and offer patients in India a much needed and timely therapy option."
Marketed under the brand name 'FabiFlu', it will be available as a 200 mg tablet, at a maximum retail price (MRP) of Rs 3,500 for a strip of 34 tablets.
The company has recommended the dose of 1800 mg twice daily on day 1, followed by 800 mg twice daily up to day 14. The statement further read that the antiviral drug has shown improvement up to 88 per cent among mild to moderate coronavirus disease cases during clinical trials.
It can also be consumed by patients with co-morbid conditions, including diabetes and heart disease with mild to moderate COVID-19 symptoms, offering a rapid reduction in viral load within four days, and faster symptomatic and radiological improvement.
Favipiravir has been approved in Japan since 2014 for the treatment of novel or re-emerging influenza virus infections.
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