Covid-19 drug Favipiravir: Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd on Tuesday announced the launch of FluGuard (Favipiravir 200 mg) at a price of Rs 35 per tablet, for the treatment of mild to moderate cases of Covid-19 in India. Favipiravir is the only oral anti-viral treatment approved in India for the potential treatment of patients with mild to moderate Covid-19 disease. The stocks of FluGuard will be available in the market from this week, Sun Pharma said in a regulatory filing.

Commenting on the launch, Kirti Ganorkar, CEO of India Business of Sun Pharma, said, “With over 50,000 Covid-19 cases being reported daily in India, there is an urgent need to provide more treatment options to healthcare professionals. We are launching FluGuard at an economical price to make the drug accessible to more and more patients thereby reducing their financial burden. This is in line with our continuous efforts to support India’s pandemic response.”

Sun Pharma is the world’s fourth-largest specialty generic pharmaceutical company and India’s top pharmaceutical company.

Favipiravir and another anti-viral treatment, remdesivir, have emerged as the most sought after medicines to treat COVID-19 in India, which had already approved the drugs as emergency treatments to fight the outbreak.

Other Indian drugmakers developing or selling favipiravir include Glenmark Pharmaceuticals, Cipla and Hetero Labs.

The company will work closely with the government and medical community to ensure the availability of FluGuard patients across the country, Sun Pharma said. The stocks of FluGuard will be available in the market this week.

Mean-while, India’s COVID-19 tally reached 18,55,475 today, with 52,050 cases being reported in a day. Recoveries rose to 12,30,509, including 44,306 in the past 24 hours, according to the Union Health Ministry data. There are 5,86,298 active cases of coronavirus infection in the country presently while the recovery rate among COVID-19 patients has gone up to 65.76%.

This is the sixth consecutive day that COVID-19 cases have increased by more than 50,000. 803 patients succumbed to coronavirus infection in the past 24 hours, taking the overall death toll to 38,938.

According to the ICMR, a cumulative total of 2,08,64,206 samples have been tested till August 3 with 6,61,715 samples being tested on Monday.