Canadian pharmaceutical company donating drug that could help fight COVID-19

 

Apotex Canada is donating two million dosages of hydroxychloroquine to the federal government as part of a study on the drug’s effectiveness in treating COVID-19.

Apotex, Canada’s largest pharmaceutical company, is currently the county’s only manufacturer of hydroxychloroquine, and it has repurposed its plants in order to increase production of the drug.

“Our goal from the outset has been to protect the supply of this product for patients currently using it for approved indications,” Jeff Watson, president and CEO of Apotex, said in a news release.

“At the same time, we recognize the importance of building a clinical profile of this medicine to determine its efficacy in treating COVID-19, and we are fortunate to be able to meet both needs,” he continued.

The donated medication will be set aside for current and future COVID-19-related clinical trials that are approved by Health Canada’s Office of Clinical Trials at the Therapeutic Products Directorate.

Additionally, some of the donated medication will be provided to the National Emergency Strategic Stockpile, which will be used by the provinces and territories in the event of a significant shortage.

“Our ability to rapidly increase production underscores the importance of having a domestic manufacturing capability,” Watson said.

“The current pandemic has highlighted this fact as the complexity and demand of the global supply chain has come under significant pressure,” he added.

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