Biotech firm Gilead Sciences said Thursday it’ll be able to make enough of its antiviral remdesivir by October to meet global demand to treat COVID-19, CNBC reported.
Gilead also announced it’ll produce more than 2 million treatment courses of the drug by the end of the year and anticipates being able to produce “several million more” in 2021, adding it has increased supply of the drug more than “50-fold” since January, the business news outlet reported.
Though there are no FDA-approved drugs for the coronavirus, doctors have been using the intravenous drug, which was developed to treat HIV, on COVID-19 patients.
Research has shown it’s helped shorten the recovery time of some hospitalized patients, and in May the FDA granted remdesivir an emergency use authorization.
During a conference call discussing the company’s earnings last week, Gilead executives said they expect to sell 1 million to 1.5 million treatment courses of the drug this year, CNBC reported.
Gilead is selling remdesivir for $520 per vial in the U.S. to patients with private insurance and $390 per vial to federal insurance programs as well as foreign countries, CNBC reported.
The majority of patients treated with remdesivir receive a five-day treatment course using six vials of remdesivir, the company has said.
That’s about $3.5 billion in second-half revenue, according to a calculation from RBC Capital Markets analyst Brian Abrahams, Fierce Pharma reported.
The Department of Health and Human Services unveiled a deal in June that gives the United States more than 500,000 treatment courses of the antiviral drug for American hospitals through September, CNBC reported.
Gilead’s assurances come a day after dozens of state attorney generals called for the federal government to allow for broader production of the medicine.
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