Bangladesh’s Nuvista offers latest effective drug to treat Covid-19 patients

Wed, Jun 17, 2020

Bangladesh’s Nuvista Pharma, a subsidiary of Beximco Pharmaceuticals, manufactures the latest effective drug, dexamethasone, both in injection and tablet forms to treat Covid-19 patients.

According to a report of the BBC on Tuesday, dexamethasone is on the short yet effective list of medicines to fight novel coronavirus.
Dexamethasone, a cheap and widely available drug, cut the risk of death by a third for patients on ventilators. For those on oxygen, it cut deaths by a fifth, said the BBC report.
As the price of this drug is relatively low, patients in poorer countries could immensely benefit from it since this will not burn a big hole in their pockets, the BBC report added.
The name of Nuvista Pharma’s injection is Roxadex and the price of per ampoule is only Tk 29. The tablet name is Oradexon and its price is Tk 1.15 per tablet.
Like Nuvista, there are other few companies in Bangladesh that manufacture and market dexamethasone under different brand names.
Beximco Pharmaceuticals— one of the leading pharmaceutical companies in Bangladesh— bought 85.22 percent of shares of Nuvista Pharma in April 2018. About 12.92 percent of the company is owned by the government of Bangladesh and the rest by other local shareholders.
Talking with The Independent, Rabbur Reza, managing director of Nuvista Pharma, said results released Tuesday by the University of Oxford said that the use of dexamethasone saves the lives of people seriously afflicted by coronavirus.
“It is a cheap and easily available anti-inflammatory steroid and it is successfully used in the hospital of the UK,” he said.
Reza said based on the results of the University of Oxford, one death would be prevented by treatment of around eight ventilated patients with dexamethasone.
“It is particularly exciting as this is an inexpensive widely available medicine,” said Reza.


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