The antiviral pills that Pfizer delivered in the form of a 5-day medicine course to combat Covid-19 have been found to reduce the death rate in high-risked age groups and lower the hospitalization rate overall – a study revealed.

“Antivirals targeting #SARS_CoV_2 proteins outside the viral spike are badly needed! So happy about #Paxlovid and its high efficacy against hospitalization and severe disease are now in the final clinical trial results,” tweeted a viral immunologist David R. Martinez, Ph.D.

Another study done on the low-risked age groups revealed that they will be safe from developing severe conditions by 70 percent. However, these results can only be achieved if the patient is given Paxlovid drug three days prior to showing the Covid-19 symptoms.

Although the drug was tested on an unvaccinated sample population, it can also provide an optimal level of protection to those who have suffered break-through infections post vaccination.

Paxlovid has been proven safe in both the studies that involved around 3,500 people, of which half were given a placebo. Furthermore, the lab researchers claim that the drug is potent against the new omicron variant, which is increasingly taking over the world.

The new research “underscores the treatment candidate’s potential to save the lives of patients around the world, whether they have been vaccinated or not,”  said  Pfizer’s CEO and chairman Albert Bourla in a statement. “Emerging variants of concern, like omicron, have exacerbated the need for accessible treatment options for those who contract the virus, and we are confident that, if authorised or approved, this potential treatment could be a critical tool to help quell the pandemic.”

Paxlovid is formulated to stop the production of an enzyme that is crucial for Covid-19 virus to replicate. The drug was tested with a small dose of HIV medicine that works to slow down the breakdown of that enzyme to make it work for a longer time.

Last month, FDA hardly recommended authorising a Covid-19 pill that Merck introduced called molnupiravir as the drug was found to cause genetic mutation and thereby raised concerns for the advisory committee. However, Paxlovid is not like the previously released Covid-19 pills and has proven to work fine with low death and hospitalization rates.

“Final data .. confirmed prior results .. showing PAXLOVID™ tablets .. reduced risk of hospitalization or death by 89% (within three days of symptom onset) and 88% (within five days of symptom onset) ..” Tweeted Carl Quintanilla