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As Covid-19 cases surge in the country , the government of India on Sunday ordered prohibition on the export of Remdesivir drug and injection "till the COVID-19 situation in the country improves."

"Export of injection Remdesivir and Remdesivir Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (API) prohibited till the COVID-19 situation in the country improves," the Centre said in a statement.

"India is witnessing a recent surge in COVID cases. As on 11.04.2021, there are 11.08 lakh active COVID cases and they are steadily increasing. This has led to a sudden spike in demand for Injection Remdesivir used in treatment of COVID patients. There is a potential of a further increase in demand for Remdesivir injection in the coming days," the Centre said in a statement.

Department of Pharmaceuticals has been in contact with domestic manufacturers to ramp up the production of Remdesivir, it further stated.

In its fresh order, it said that all domestic manufactures of Remdesivir advised to display on their website, details of their stockists/distributors to facilitate access to the drug.

"Drugs inspectors and other officers directed to verify stocks and also take measures to curb hoarding and black marketing," it added.

Remdesivir is considered a key anti-viral drug in the fight against COVID-19, especially in adult patients with severe complications.

Seven Indian companies are producing Injection Remdesivir under voluntary licensing agreement with M/s. Gilead Sciences, USA. They have an installed capacity of about 38.80 lakh units per month.

The States and UTs have been advised that these steps should again be communicated to all hospitals, both in public and private sector, and compliance monitored.

The decision comes days after several states reported shortage of the anti-viral drug or injection used to treat novel coronavirus cases. Several areas in a few states are witnessing people queueing up outside medical stores for the drug as the novel coronavirus cases in the country touch over daily highs for the past few days.

Maharashtra Revenue Minister Balasaheb Thorat had earlier said there is shortage of Remdesivir injections and the supply of vaccine doses was inadequate.

On Thursday, the state government capped the price of Remdesivir between 1,100 and 1,400 per vial and warned against its hoarding and black marketing.

Meanwhile, on Sunday, Madhya Pradesh official said a sizeable batch of the drug has arrived and will be distributed to medical facilities as per requirement.

As many as 1,52,879 more people tested positive for Covid-19 across the country in the last 24 hours, taking the cumulative caseload to, the Union home ministry said on Sunday morning.

This is the biggest jump in new infections India has seen since the outbreak of the virus. The country has been clocking in over one lakh cases for five days now as the second wave rages.



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