Department of Health distributes fifth shipment of drug to help treat COVID-19 patients in hospitals
The Department of Health distributed the fifth shipment of the
investigational antiviral medication, remdesivir, to treat patients in
the hospital with COVID-19. Yesterday, 4,788 doses of medication were
sent to 82 hospitals, including St. Mary Medical Center, Doylestown
Hospital and St. Luke’s Hospital - Bethlehem. The federal government
distributed the shipment to the department on Wednesday, June 17.
“The department is working to give our hospitals every opportunity to
treat patients with COVID-19,” Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine
said. “It is important to note that there is limited information on the
safety and effectiveness of using remdesivir to treat people in the
hospital with COVID-19. However, it was shown in a clinical trial to
shorten the recovery time in some people, which is why the Food and Drug
Administration (FDA) has authorized the emergency use of the medication
The Department of Health first distributed 1,200 doses of the medication
to 51 hospitals across Pennsylvania on May 12. A second round of 7,938
doses were sent to 79 hospitals on May 15 and May 18, a third round of
8,928 doses was distributed to 81 hospitals on May 22 and a fourth round
of 4,400 doses was distributed to 73 hospitals on June 3.
The hospitals that have received these shipments were determined based
on the number and severity of COVID-19 patients at the hospital and the
facility’s documented usage of previous rounds of remdesivir. The
department will continue to work with federal partners to acquire more
doses of this medication to serve more patients across Pennsylvania.
Remdesivir is given to a patient through an IV once per day for up to 10
days, depending on how critically ill the patient is. According to the
FDA, remdesivir may help decrease the amount of coronavirus in your
body, which may help you get better faster.