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Anti-flu drug from Japan "very promising" in the treatment of COVID-19 patients: DOH

The Philippines is looking to allocate a Japanese anti-flu medication  into the country as it appears to be "very promising" for treating coronavirus disease (COVID-19) patients according to the Department of Health.

The drug is known as Avigan or "favipiravir" which is made by Japanese conglomerate Fujifilm Toyama Chemical, the same company known for its cameras.

"Very promising po siya, mukha po talaga siyang sa ngayon sa mga anti-viral ay ito po ang parang medyo directed po ang treatment towards talagang sa COVID-19," Health Undersecretary Eric Domingo.

The Japanese government is already looking to officially approve Avigan as a treatment for COVID-19 once clinical trials conclude.

Trials were done with 340 patients in the Chinese cities of Wuhan and Shenzhen found that favipiravir was “clearly effective in treatment” of COVID-19.

In addition, X-rays confirmed improvements in lung condition in about 91% of the patients who were treated with favipiravir, compared to 62% or those without the drug.

Fujifilm also makes medical equipment, anti-aging skincare, hair products—and now a potential coronavirus treatment.


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