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NEW YORK — Pfizer has announced a pill it is testing dramatically reduces COVID-19 deaths and hospitalizations in patients, including some who were at high risk.

According to Pfizer, taking a series of these pills, called PAXLOVID, starting within three days of developing symptoms reduced the risk of being hospitalized or dying from COVID by 89%, compared to people who got placebo pills.

Among the 1,219 people included in this early analysis, no one who took the Pfizer pills died, however, 10 people who got the placebo pills did.

The company is sending the data to the FDA in an effort to get agency approval for Emergency Use Authorization.

Pfizer hopes this pill will be available to the public by early next year.

“Today’s news is a real game-changer in the global efforts to halt the devastation of this pandemic. These data suggest that our oral antiviral candidate, if approved by regulatory authorities, has the potential to save patients’ lives, reduce the severity of COVID-19 infections, and eliminate up to nine out of ten hospitalizations,” Albert Bourla, Pfizer Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, said in a release.

Last month, Merck applied for FDA authorization for its own COVID-19 treatment. The FDA’s advisory committee is set to review Merck’s application on November 30.

If cleared by the FDA, Merck’s pill would be the first one shown to treat COVID-19.


The video featured in the player above is from a previous report.

Copyright © 2021 WLS-TV. All Rights Reserved.

Source: ABC7

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