According to a recent NBC News article, the FDA has granted full approval to Pfizer’s antiviral pill, Paxlovid. The pill is specifically intended for adults over 50 and individuals with medical conditions that make them more susceptible to severe illness or death from COVID-19. The FDA's decision comes after clinical data proved the safety and effectiveness of the drug. It consists of two medications, nirmatrelvir and ritonavir, that work in tandem to block a key enzyme the virus needs to replicate and boost the body's ability to fight the infection.
Initially, the U.S. government made 1.1 million treatments available for free nationwide, but once that supply is exhausted, Pfizer will sell Paxlovid directly to healthcare providers at an undisclosed price. Though Paxlovid generated significant sales for Pfizer in 2022, the company expects a decline this year.. Concerns have been raised about "rebound cases," where patients experience a return of COVID-19 symptoms or test positive shortly after recovery, but the FDA review found no evidence of a higher rebound rate in patients who received Paxlovid compared to those who received a placebo.