Remdesivir for the Treatment of Covid-19 by New England Journal of Medicine

Source Reference

The New England Journal of Medicine recently published a preliminary report on “Remdesivir for the treatment of Covid-19”. Below is the list of doctors who authored this report, followed by our summary for the general public.

  • John H. Beigel, M.D., 
  • Kay M. Tomashek, M.D., M.P.H., 
  • Lori E. Dodd, Ph.D., 
  • Aneesh K. Mehta, M.D., 
  • Barry S. Zingman, M.D., 
  • Andre C. Kalil, M.D., M.P.H., 
  • Elizabeth Hohmann, M.D., 
  • Helen Y. Chu, M.D., M.P.H., 
  • Annie Luetkemeyer, M.D., 
  • Susan Kline, M.D., M.P.H., 
  • Diego Lopez de Castilla, M.D., M.P.H., 
  • Robert W. Finberg, M.D., 

Remdesivir for the treatment of Covid-19

The trial identified a primary outcome that changed into the key secondary end point. Ultimately, researchers found both primary and key secondary end points were significantly different between patients in the remdesivir group and patients in the placebo group.

Trial Circumstances

Researchers encountered many difficulties during this trial. The trial started with restricted travel, and hospitals limited the access of nonessential personnel. Such staff completed training, site initiation visits, and monitoring visits off site. Researchers did other clinical duties, and staff got ill, further complicating workflow. Several medical teams lacked personal protective equipment and trial-related supplies, including swabs. Nevertheless, researchers were enthusiastic to develop innovative solutions to surmount these obstacles.

FDA Authorization

The Food and Drug Administration gave Gilead emergency-use authorization for the treatment of adults and children with severe Covid-19 disease using remdesivir. The New England Journal of Medicine published this preliminary medical report to guide clinicians on the use of remdesivir. The trial will reveal final visits, data entry, monitoring, and data lock for the last of the 1063 patients enrolled. Hence, a more comprehensive report that reflects the broad scope of this trial will become available in the near future.

In addition, this independent medical group assessed the primary outcome, key secondary outcomes, and mortality results on current data from May 18, 2020. In fact, one would need to see the full statistical analysis of the whole population of patients in this study to fully comprehend the efficacy of remdesivir.


Indeed, researchers conclude that these initial findings encourage the application of remdesivir for patients who are hospitalized with Covid-19 and need oxygen support. However, the medication remdesivir is not enough as a treatment schedule due to the high mortality rate. This medical team concludes that upcoming approaches to treat patients with Covid-19 should evaluate a combination of therapeutic options or a blend with antiviral agents to further enhance patient outcomes in Covid-19.

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