US pharmaceuticals giant Pfizer Inc’s Covid-19 pill has received emergency approval in China in a promising sign that the nation may welcome further foreign vaccines and treatments for the virus, reports Bloomberg. The National Medical Products Administration announced in a statement that Paxlovid’s import registration was approved on February 11. The Chinese regulator requires relevant research work to continue to be carried out, with conditional requirements completed within a time limit, and the follow-up research results submitted in a timely manner.
The emergency approval is the first China has given to a drug or vaccine developed by a foreign country for Covid-19. The mRNA Covid vaccine co-developed by Pfizer and BioNTech, which Shanghai Fosun Pharmaceutical Group Co. secured rights to for the Greater China region, has not yet been approved in the country.
China’s homegrown efforts to develop Covid antivirals have largely lagged the West, with the most advanced still in the final stage of trials at sites outside of the country. Such treatments could be critical to help China move away from its zero-Covid approach to managing the virus.
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