Government halts export of Remdesivir till COVID-19 situation improves
The Centre has taken the step at a time when the country is seeing a growing demand for Remdesivir injections due to a steep rise in COVID-19 cases in the wake of the second wave of the pandemic.
April 11, 2021 / 08:38 PM IST
Remdesivir [Image: Reuters]
The Government of India, on April 11, halted the export of COVID-19 treatment drug Remdesivir till the pandemic situation in the country -- which is witnessing the second wave -- improves.
The Government of India said: "Export of injection Remdesivir and Remdesivir Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (API) prohibited till the COVID-19 situation in the country improves."
The Centre notification released on April 11 read: “India is witnessing a recent surge in COVID-19 cases. As on 11.04.2021, there are 11.08 lakh active COVID-19 cases, and they are steadily increasing. This has led to a sudden spike in demand for injection Remdesivir used to treat coronavirus patients. There is a potential of further increase in this demand in the coming days.”
Additionally, to ensure easy access of hospitals and patients to Remdesivir, the Centre has taken the following steps:
All domestic manufactures of Remdesivir have been advised to display on their website, details of their stockists/distributors to facilitate access to the drug.
Drug inspectors and other officers have been directed to verify stocks and check their malpractices and also take other effective actions to curb hoarding and black marketing. The state Health Secretaries will review this with the Drug Inspectors of the respective states/UTs.
The Department of Pharmaceuticals has been in contact with the domestic manufacturers to ramp up the production of Remdesivir in India.
Notably, there are seven Indian companies that are currently producing injection Remdesivir under voluntary licensing agreement with M/s Gilead Sciences, USA. They have an installed capacity of about 38.80 lakh units per month, according to the Centre notification.