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The U.S. will get less than half of Gilead Sciences Inc.’s worldwide donation of 1.5 million vials of its Covid-19 medicine over the next six weeks, which isn’t expected to be enough to treat all the patients who would qualify for it.
Gilead is donating about 607,000 vials of its remdesivir in the U.S. during that time frame. That’s enough to treat 78,000 hospitalized patients, according to the Department of Health and Human Services. Health officials authorized emergency use of the treatmentearlier this month.
“Initial supply of remdesivir is likely to be constrained to an even greater degree than we had previously estimated,” RBC analyst Brian Abrahams wrote in a note to clients. He said he had been expecting 80% of Gilead’s donation to be distributed in the U.S. With less than 50,000 going out in the first two shipments, the rollout was also slower than what he was expecting.
More than 300,000 eligible patients in the U.S. won’t have access to the Foster City, California-based company’s treatment through the end of July. That and “continued limited supply through almost the end of the year” could put pressure on state health departments, according to Abrahams.
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