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On World Health Organization (WHO) recommending the use of two new drugs for treatment of Covid-19 patients, WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus notified that their success and impact will depend on how widely available and affordable they will be. This comes as Omicron cases fill hospitals around the world.

The UN body has recently recommended two new drugs to treat patients showing critical symptoms, as well as for the non-severe cases - Eli Lilly & Co.’s rheumatoid arthritis drug and GlaxoSmithKline Plc’s monoclonal antibody

Use of baricitinib drug

Lilly's baricitinib drug is a Janus kinase (JAK) inhibitor- a class of drugs used to treat autoimmune conditions, blood and bone marrow cancers, and rheumatoid arthritis. For COVID patients, it can improve survival rates and reduce the need for ventilation in severely ill patients.

The baricitinib is “strongly recommended" for patients with severe or critical disease. However, it should be used along with corticosteroids. 

Use of sotrovimab drug

For use of a monoclonal antibody sotrovimab, WHO has made a conditional recommendation for non-severe cases. According to UN body, the drug should only be administered to patients at the highest risk of hospitalisation. In those at lower risk, it only showed 'trivial benefits".

"Today's recommendations are based on new evidence from seven trials involving over 4,000 patients with non-severe, severe, and critical covid-19 infection," WHO said in the British Medical Journal, reported Sputnik.

(With inputs from agencies)

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