Pfizer says antiviral pill sharply reduces severe illness, should work against omicron

Pfizer released data Dec. 14 showing that Paxlovid, its COVID-19 antiviral pill, reduced the risk of hospitalization or death by 89 percent in high-risk adults.

The data comes from a phase 2/3 trial involving 2,246 adults.

Pfizer shared the trial data with the FDA as part of its ongoing rolling submission for the pill's emergency use authorization. The agency has yet to schedule an advisory committee meeting to review the application.

The company also said lab studies suggest Paxlovid is effective against the omicron variant, though more research must be conducted.

The news comes as preliminary studies emerge on the Pfizer vaccine's effectiveness against omicron. Two recent studies, one from the University of Oxford and one from the Israeli Health Ministry, suggest Pfizer's booster provides a much stronger immune response against the omicron variant than its two-shot series alone.


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