Yesterday, at the fourth session of the tenth tenure of People's Council of HCMC’s question-and-answer session chaired by Chairwoman of the Ho Chi Minh City People's Council Nguyen Thi Le, delegate Dang Quoc Toan, Chief of the Office of the municipal People's Committee, asked when Covid-19 treatment drugs will be widely sold at pharmacies to facilitate doctors’ prescription and patients.
Answering this question, Director of the HCMC Department of Health Tang Chi Thuong said that currently, drugs to treat Covid-19 are available, especially antiviral drugs (Molnupiravir) that have proven effective after a period of testing.
Recently, more drugs to treat Covid-19 manufactured by the pharmaceutical company Pfizer (USA) are available on the domestic market.
Currently, pharmaceutical companies that hold the copyright have agreed to franchise to Vietnam; therefore, the Ministry of Health will consider licensing domestic production in the coming time.
The director of Ho Chi Minh City Department of Health expects that in the near future, drugs to treat Covid-19 will not be in short supply. The Government is expected to allow the mass sale of Covid-19 treatment drugs.
At that time, people can go to pharmacies to buy and use them like other common flu medicines.
The lack of access to antiviral drugs to treat Covid-19 in HCMC has pushed residents to look for such products online, even with the risk of buying fakes. Delegate Tran Quang Vinh said that many patients infected with Covid-19 self-medicated without declaring the health status to local administration and health sector.
This will affect the disease prevention mission and patients’ conditions. Delegates asked whether the health sector in Ho Chi Minh City has any solution to detect these cases.
In addition to increased propaganda to raise people's awareness, functional agencies also strengthen inspection and impose sanctions according to regulations.
Molnupiravir was used by the health ministry on a trial basis to treat Covid-19 patients in HCMC since mid-August. Following their clinical trials, they have been officially distributed for free under special management. The drug is distributed by the municipal health department to 22 medical facilities across the city.
Last month, Prime Minister Pham Minh Chinh said Vietnam must produce its Covid-19 vaccines and drugs to save budget costs.