Europe has too much COVID drug – level 3

27-02-2024 15:00

European countries bought significant quantities of the antiviral medication Paxlovid to combat COVID-19; however, a substantial portion is at risk of expiring, amounting to around 3.1 million unused courses across the UK, Germany, Spain,

Italy, and France. Despite its effectiveness in reducing severe illness by nearly 90%, Paxlovid faces underutilization due to declining infection rates and high vaccination coverage, leading to reduced demand. Challenges in prescribing criteria, distribution efficiency, and risk assessment contribute to its limited use. Furthermore, the drug’s complex nature, consisting of two components with potential drug interactions, poses difficulties for physicians, particularly in older patients.

While some countries like France have simplified access to Paxlovid, ensuring effective use remains a challenge, highlighting the complexities of balancing risk and benefit in healthcare decision-making.

Difficult words: underutilization (the state of not being used to the fullest content), criterion (a principle or standard by which something may be judged or decided), complexity (when something is difficult or complicated).

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What challenges do European countries face in effectively utilizing the antiviral medication Paxlovid to combat COVID-19?


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