Manila Mayor Francisco “Isko” Domagoso on Thursday said the city government has acquired 2,000 vials of antiviral drug remdesivir, which will be part of its treatment program for COVID-19 cases.
Domagoso said the local government purchased the vials at P6,500 each, a sharp drop from the original price of nearly P20,000, for a total of P13 million.
"Kung saka-sakali kakailanganin pa, bibili pa po tayo, mapangalagaan lang namin kayo, mapataas lang namin ang probabilidad na kapag kayo ay na-infect ng COVID-19, kayo ay mag-recover," Domagoso said.
“This is part of our continuous effort to strengthen the medical care for our mild, moderate and severe cases of COVID-19 in Manila,” Domagoso added on Twitter.
The drug can reduce the duration of hospital stay for those fighting COVID-19.
Domagoso explained that this is not a vaccine, but a drug that would help combat COVID-19.
"Pinapaalala rin po namin na hindi po ito ang vaccine; ang Remdesivir ay gamot lamang na makatutulong sa pagpapabuti ng kundisyon ng mga lubhang apektado ng COVID-19 infection," he said.
Remdesivir is approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and the city government plans to use as an antiviral medication to treat COVID-19 patients in the six district hospitals in Manila, he said.
According to its latest bulletin as of Aug. 7, the city has recorded 5,719 coronavirus cases.
The tally includes 1,253 active cases, 3,690 recoveries and 236 fatalities.