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Duterte, Japan’s Abe discussed potential treatment drug for COVID-19, PH ready to participate

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President Rodrigo Duterte told Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at a Special ASEAN Summit that the Philippines was ready to participate in clinical trials of a Japan-made drug, Avigan, as a possible novel coronavirus (COVID-19) treatment.

The discussion took place at the special virtual summit of the Association of Southeast Nations (ASEAN) and its dialogue partners China, Japan and South Korea on COVID-19, Cabinet Secretary Karlo Nograles said.

"Kung naalala nyo po nung Lunes nabanggit ni Pangulong Duterte ang Avigan, isang gamot na ginagamit para sa flu; isa ito sa mga pinag-usapan sa ASEAN Three Plus One Summit," Nograles said. 

"The president had an exchange with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe regarding this drug, and during the meeting (Duterte) reiterated that the Philippines is ready to participate in clinical trials of potential vaccines like Avigan," Nograles added.

Potential vaccines are also being developed in other countries including the United States and China. Duterte told fellow Asian leaders that all countries should be given “fair and easy” access to vaccines and treatments for COVID-19 once they become available. 


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