Mysore/Mysuru: Even during the first wave of COVID-19 last year, there was a huge demand for Remdesivir injections and there was a shortage in cities including Mysuru. When the pandemic was at its peak, each vial that costs Rs. 4,500 to Rs. 5,000 was sold at a whopping Rs. 1 lakh. The drug was sold at exorbitant prices through a network outside hospitals where touts would approach anxious patient relatives who were desperately looking out for the injections.
As it was the first wave and many people were dying, Remdesivir was thought as a ‘magic bullet’ for critically ill patients and there was a huge demand and prices sky-rocketed too. During the present second wave, however, there have been increased cases of fake Remdesivir injections flooding the market and in many cities, the racket has been busted.
Not a ‘magic bullet’
Meanwhile, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi Director Randeep Guleria has asked doctors yesterday to exercise caution while prescribing Remdesivir to patients and said that the drug being used to treat Coronavirus disease is not a ‘magic bullet’. He advised doctors that the Remdesivir drug does not reduce mortality and is of no use if given to people with mild symptoms.
“It is important to understand that Remdesivir is not a magic bullet and is not a drug that decreases mortality. We may use it due to lack of an antiviral drug and it is useless if given at an early state to asymptomatic individuals or to patients with mild symptoms. It is also ineffective if administered late,” Guleria said.