LAKE MARY, Fla. - Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis on Saturday announced the state has received new shipments of a promising drug remdesivir.
Developed by Gilead Sciences, remdesivir is described as an “investigational broad-spectrum antiviral treatment.” Previously, remdesivir was used to treat humans with Ebola and HIV. It had also shown promise in animal models for treating Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) and severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), according to the NIH.
The drug works by attacking the virus's ability to replicate inside the human body. Doctors say it does the same thing with COVID-19 and that's why it is important for patients to take it early on in their fight with the disease.
On Friday, Gilead said remdesivir has shown to reduce the risk of death in patients with severe COVID-19 infections by 62 percent compared with standard care.
Remdesivir is currently only approved for SARS-CoV-2 in Europe and Japan, but the FDA allowed emergency use approval of the experimental drug in early May.
Gov. DeSantis also talked about another coronavirus treatment showing positive results. According to doctors, convalescent plasma treatments are among the few COVID-19 treatments that can be very effective. It requires the plasma from a COVID-19 survivor because it's rich with antibodies.
Lastly, the governor mentioned one other drug, a steroid called dexamethasone which is typically used for asthma. One study showed positive results for people who had to be put on ventilators. Researchers at the University of Oxford recently deemed dexamethasone as a “life-saving” drug treatment for COVID-19