USA buys almost all stocks of coronavirus drug remdesivir

The Trump administration has bought the entire stock of Gilead Science's Remdesivir, the drug shown to reduce recovery times for people suffering from coronavirus, leaving none for the rest of the world.

Said HHS Secretary Alex Azar: "President Trump has struck an unbelievable deal to ensure Americans have access to the first authorised therapeutic for Covid-19".

Remdesivir, the first drug approved by licensing authorities in the United States to treat Covid-19, is made by Gilead and has been shown to help people recover faster from the disease.

A statement from the Department of Health and Human services says Trump struck an "amazing" deal with Gilead for 500,000 doses which amounts to 100% of Gilead's production in July, 90% of it in August and 90% in September.

Remdesivir is expected to be in high demand as one of the only treatments so far shown to alter the course of the virus.

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There was an immediate backlash against the decision on twitter from people living outside the US.

While Remdesivir was approved for Emergency Use Authorization by the FDA in order to conduct its testing, Gilead awaits full approval.

According to sources, experts and campaigners have been alarmed by the unilateral action taken by the USA in obtaining the drug Remdesivir.

This comes two days after Gilead Sciences announced its pricing plan for the much-talked-about antiviral drug.

Remdesivir, which was used to treat Ebola, is produced nearly exclusively by United States pharmaceutical giant Gilead.

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For US patients with commercial insurance, Gilead said it will charge $3,120 for a five-day treatment course.

One person wrote: "America bought the entire three month stock of Remdesivir". "The study demonstrates the potential for some patients to be treated with a five-day regimen, which could significantly expand the number of patients who could be treated with our current supply of remdesivir".

'But Trump has made it clear that he is going to provide drugs and vaccines - if they become available - to Americans first.

It's also hardly unprecedented.

"We are going in the wrong direction", said Fauci.

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The drug was developed over 10 years ago when the company was searching for treatments for hepatitis C but did not develop it. It's really just local governments and they tend to respond politically more than ethically or scientifically, ' said Dr Caplan.

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