Ecns wire

Chinese cities write to Merck for procurement of COVID treatment molnupiravir

2023-01-11 Editor : Zhang Dongfang ECNS App Download

(ECNS) -- Chinese cities including Tianjin, Shanghai, and Suzhou have sent letters to Merck & Co.'s for the procurement of COVID-19 antiviral treatment molnupiravir.

Molnupiravir was priced at 1,500 yuan ($221.21) per bottle in Tianjin, according to the city's medical purchasing center on Tuesday.

Cai Maisong, vice president of Sinopharm as well as a member of CPPCC Shanghai Committee, said on Tuesday that the drug is expected to be sold in China before 2023 Spring Festival.

According to Cai, the first batch of molnupiravir arrived in Shanghai in the early morning of Jan. 4. “We have purchased hundreds of thousands of boxes of molnupiravir and they are arriving in Shanghai every day. We’ll continue to purchase it,” said Cai.

Sinopharm is replacing the drug’s English packages with Chinese ones.

Each hard capsule contains 200 milligrams of molnupiravir and comes in a bottle of 40 capsules, sufficient for one patient to complete a five-day course, and the drug is sold at $712 by main buyers.

Molnupiravir is the second foreign Covid-19 treatment cleared for emergency use in China after Paxlovid. The latter failed to be covered by China's national medical insurance system due to its high quotation in negotiations between China's National Healthcare Security Administration (NHSA) and Pfizer.


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