Will there be a COVID pill?


A: Signs are hopeful!

Widespread vaccination remains our best bet at #kickingCOVID. But having an arsenal of treatments is important, too. In a recent speech at the National Press Club, Dr. Fauci argued that the biggest treatment need is a convenient medicine – like a pill – that can stomp out severe disease at the first sign of COVID symptoms.

Happily, news from drug developers suggests that hope is on the way.

💥 Pfizer’s CEO announced earlier this week that its experimental oral antiviral might be available by the end of the year

💥 Merck recently announced that its oral antiviral – developed with Ridgeback Biotherapeutics – is hitting relevant clinical trial milestones

💥 Roche and AstraZeneca are also in the game

A note: There’s still quite a bit of science to be done before these promising prospects can hit the big leagues. Also: Barriers to accessing and timing these types of treatments may be substantial, especially in low-resource contexts and for those who lack access to health care. As such, they are best characterized as promising bullpen relievers, not future star pitchers.

As always, we’ll stay on the beat.

Stay safe, stay sane, stay hopeful. Isn’t science a beauty?!

Your Nerdy Girls


Pfizer release

Merck/Ridgeback Biotherapeutics release

NBC News, “COVID treatment has improved, but many wish for an easy pill.” Fauci quoted.

Recent DP posts on other types of treatments:

What do we know about treatment for people with COVID-19 infections who need to be hospitalized?

What works for the treatment of COVID-19 infection for people who are not in the hospital?

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