Abu Dhabi becomes first location to receive new Covid-19 medication
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Abu Dhabi becomes first location to receive new Covid-19 medication

Abu Dhabi becomes first location to receive new Covid-19 medication

The Sotrovimab medicine can prevent severe cases and death for selected Covid-19 patients by more than 85 per cent

The anti-viral treatment for Covid-19, Sotrovimab, is now available for early treatment of certain categories of patients in the UAE.

The availability of the medicine follows an agreement between the Abu Dhabi Department of Health, the country’s group purchasing organization (GPO) Rafed, and biopharmaceutical company GlaxoSmithKline (GSK). Etihad Cargo, the cargo and logistics arm of the Etihad Aviation Group and Hope Consortium, have transported the first batch of Sotrovimab into the UAE utilising its IATA CEIV-certified PharmaLife product.

With the arrival of the first shipment at the Abu Dhabi airport, the capital emirate become the first location globally to receive this drug, Abu Dhabi Government Media Office reported.

Sotrovimab is a monoclonal antibody treatment delivered through intravenous therapy, and can be used to treat adults and children above the age of 12 who meet certain criteria and are at risk of progressing to a severe Covid-19 condition, as per protocols that have been developed by the National Scientific Committee.

Studies reveal that the medicine has proven to prevent hospitalisation and death in 85 per cent of early selected treatment cases and can work on all known variations to date.

The National Scientific Committee in the country’s health ministry and Abu Dhabi Department of Health have worked on the treatment protocols that will guide doctors in defining risk patients and ensuring that they have access to Sotrovimab according to their risk profile and eligibility criteria. Meanwhile, Abu Dhabi-based Rafed will facilitate the procurement, storage and distribution of Sotrovimab via the Rafed Distribution Center, a specialised cold-storage facility, which is part of the Hope Consortium, a statement said.

Dr. Jamal Mohamed Kaabi, undersecretary for the Abu Dhabi Department of Health, said: “This medicine is at the forefront of pharmaceutical advancement and is a powerful tool in our fight to end this pandemic. We look forward to implement the eligibility criteria for emergency use of Sotrovimab as part of Abu Dhabi’s commitment to lead an all-encompassing Covid-19 response in prevention, treatment and care.”

Rashed Al Qubaisi, CEO of Rafed, added: “Sotrovimab represents a massive breakthrough in the fight against Covid-19. Through our close collaboration and partnership with the Department of Health and GSK, we have been able to work swiftly in the procurement of the medication to ensure an effective and timely roll-out across the UAE. The Rafed Distribution Center continues to fulfil its mission of better serving the UAE public and extending Abu Dhabi’s Covid-19 response to the world.”

Gizem Akalin, managing director and vice president, GSK Gulf said: “Our partnership with DOH and Rafed is holistic, securing early access to Sotrovimab so that the population in Abu Dhabi and UAE will be among the first in the world to get this new treatment.”

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