COVID-19: Maharashtra to begin Remdesivir clinical trial

ST Staff
Saturday, 13 June 2020

Maharashtra state government to begin Remdesivir, an anti-virus medicine on trial as COVID-19 cases rising in the state

Mumbai: Maharashtra now will start trials of Remdesivir, an anti-virus medicine. A report regarding that will be sent to drug controllers in two-three days. The Maharashtra State Government is all set to purchase Remdesivir medicine from a firm of Bangladesh.

According to the experts, this medicine is showing good results against COVID-19 virus. Remdesivir will be provided to 18 Medical colleges in the state. It will be only used for serious patients. If the Central Government of India permits, Indian firms can also commence the production of this drug.

The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) approved the use of this medicine 15 days before and eventually the state government also gave nod for its use. This anti-viral drug is proved successful against COVID-19 infection.

The three steps testing of this medicine will be done in the state’s all and Mumbai Municipal Corporation’s four medical colleges.  A month ago, COVID-19 task force demanded the Chief Minister to make Favipiravir and Remdesivir medicines available as soon as possible.

The 3000 bottles Remdesivir provided by Mumbai based BDR Pharmaceuticals and Hyderabad based Hetero will be provided for free to patients. Exactly when these trials will commence is not clear yet. Few hospitals’ ethics committees have approved trials. The later state government will ask Indian drug controllers for providing medicine from these both countries. The Director of Medical Education and Research, Dr Tatyarao Lahane informed, “After the reports of trials, companies will be allowed to produce and distribute the medicine.”

A firm from Bangladesh is going to provide anti-virus medicines to Maharashtra state for $160 and $65 respectively.  To co-ordinate between the trials of Government Medical Colleges and trials of different departments of hospitals, St George’s Hospital’s Chairman Dr Akash Khobragade is appointed.

Coordinating Officer, Dr Akash Khobragade said, “Soon the trials on Remdesivir medicine will commence in all the medical colleges of the state. For that permission from the drug, controllers will be taken. The medical experts will take a decision regarding the procedure of trials. These papers will be presented to controllers within two-three days. After their permission, ethics committees of each Medical college will take the decision. The trials will be conducted all over the state.”

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