The coronavirus it will be difficult to eradicate, but “soon we will resume a normal life”. Word of Albert Bourla, Pfizer CEO, that, in an interview with the French newspaper Le Figaro, try to take stock of the pandemic, not hiding doubts.
Coronavirus, what Pfzier’s CEO thinks
“Nobody knows” if Omicron will be the latest wave of Covid – says Bourla – which is in France for the launch at the end of January of the anticovid drug Paxlovid, which will arrive in French pharmacies at the end of January.
“We have had so many surprises since the beginning of the pandemic I don’t want to be pessimistic, but we will undoubtedly have to live years with a virus that is very difficult to eradicate. It has spread throughout the world, can contaminate the same person several times and has changed to the point of making us rediscover the Greek alphabet. The question is not whether this virus will disappear or not, it is whether we can resume a normal life. And I think so ”explained Bourla, adding that a return to normal could come in the spring,“ thanks to all the tools at our disposal: tampons, very effective vaccines and the first treatments to be taken at home ”.
Talking about Paxlovid, the manager of the American group explained that the drug “will be prescribed to people at risk diagnosed as positive, it will change the situation for our health systems, emptying hospitals”.
As for the vaccine doses that will need to be re-proposed, the Omicron variant “has called everything into question”, says Bourla: “it is too early to know if there will be a need for more frequent boosters or a new vaccine adapted to Omicron. We experiment with different scenarios, including that of a specific vaccine for Omicron and other variants.
We will make a decision by March, based on our studies. We will be able to launch production immediately. I don’t think multiple vaccinations lower our immune protection ”.
Paxlovid under the lens of the EMA
After the green light in the USA and Canada, theantiviral by mouth of Pzifer is now being examined byEma has begun to evaluate the application for authorization submitted by the pharmaceutical group for placing on the market. The response from the EU Medicines Agency is expected in the coming weeks.
Paxlovid is an oral antiviral medicine that “reduces the ability of SARS-CoV-2 to multiply in the body”, reads the Ema website. Pfizer’s application for its anti-Covid pill concerns the treatment of mild to moderate disease in adult and adolescent patients (12 years of age and older weighing at least 40 kg) at high risk of progression to Severe Covid.
The EMA, the note continues, “will evaluate the benefits and risks of Paxlovid in a short time and could issue an opinion within a few weeks, depending on whether the data presented are sufficiently robust or if further information is needed”.
In Italy, Merck’s anti-Covid pill (molnupiravir) is already available since January 4, but it has shown a reduced effectiveness compared to the first data.