Yesterday, the Prime Minister announced that new lifesaving treatments for coronavirus have passed rigorous clinical trials – and will be available through the NHS immediately – helping to potentially save thousands of lives.
British scientific research has contributed to the creation of new lifesaving treatments – Tocilizumab and Sarilumab – which, when added to the armoury of vaccines and treatments already being rolled out, will play a significant role in defeating this virus.
Tocilizumab and Sarilumab have been found to reduce the risk of death for critically ill patients by almost a quarter and have cut time spent in intensive care by as much as ten days. Updated guidance will be issued today, encouraging NHS trusts across the UK to use these drugs to treat patients in intensive care units, with immediate effect.
Results from the Government-funded REMAP-CAP clinical trial published yesterday showed tocilizumab and sarilumab reduced the relative risk of death by 24%, when administered to patients within 24 hours of entering intensive care.
Most of the data came from when the drugs were administered in addition to a corticosteroid, such as dexamethasone – also discovered through Government-backed research through the RECOVERY clinical trial – which is already provided as standard of care to the NHS.
This is evidence of the UK’s excellent research infrastructure and life sciences industry advancing global understanding of this disease, which we have done both through our own programme of clinical research and through our ability to make very large contributions to international studies.
Supplies of tocilizumab are already available in hospitals across the UK and clinicians will be able to treat all those admitted to intensive care units, potentially saving hundreds of lives. The department is working closely with Roche, who manufacture tocilizumab, to ensure treatments continue to be available to UK patients.
For any more information, please visit: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/nhs-patients-to-receive-life-saving-covid-19-treatments-that-could-cut-hospital-time-by-10-days.