The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has given emergency approval for the drug remdesivir to be used as a coronavirus treatment, US President Donald Trump has said.
Trump said that the CEO of Gilead, which developed the drug, had described the move as an important first step and would donate 1.5 million vials of remdesivir.
Vice-President Mike Pence said distribution of the drug to hospitals would begin on Monday.
The drug, which was originally developed as a treatment for Ebola, cut the duration of coronavirus symptoms from 15 to 11 days in one US trial involving hospitals around the world.
However, a Chinese study has questioned the drug’s usefulness.
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