Hello, I am Dr. Michael Anderson. I’m an intensive care physician and a senior advisor at the Department of Health and Human Services Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness & Response, also known as
ASPR. At ASPR I help guide the novel COVID-19 therapeutics as well as focus on a pediatric response agenda.
I want to talk about one of the therapeutics that can help people with COVID-19 remdesivir, also known as Veklury®.
What is Veklury?
Veklury is an antiviral administered with an IV, used to help fight the coronavirus infection by stopping the virus from replicating in the body. This lowers the viral load, reducing the chances of the illness progressing to more serious symptoms and hospitalization.
Who is eligible for Veklury?
Veklury is for adults and children who are at
high risk for developing serious symptoms of COVID-19 that may lead to hospitalization or death. For more information about who is at risk, please see the resources provided in the description.
Veklury is for people who have tested positive for COVID-19 either through PCR or rapid antigen testing. Veklury may be used for outpatients and patients in the hospital. For people who are not in the hospital, their symptoms should be mild to moderate. Veklury should be administered as soon as possible after testing positive for COVID-19. Studies have shown it needs to be given within seven days of symptom onset to be effective at lowering your risk of progression.
How is Veklury administered?
Veklury is given as an intravenous infusion once a day for three days. The dose should be adjusted for children.
What are the limitations of use for Veklury?
Veklury is not for children weighing less than 3.5 kg or 7.7 lb. Veklury should be stopped if a liver enzyme called ALT rises to 10 times above the normal limit or if your ALT level elevation is accompanied by signs of liver inflammation. Veklury is not recommended in patients with severe kidney disease or an eGFR of less than 30 mL/min. This also applies to full-term neonates with a serum creatinine of 1 mg/dL or greater. Unlike some COVID-19 therapies, the chances of drug interactions with Veklury are really very low.
Veklury is one of several
COVID-19 therapeutic options. I urge you to watch the other
videos in this outpatient series. Also visit us online at
https://aspr.hhs.gov/COVID-19 and please see the resources linked in the description to learn more. You can also connect with ASPR on social media platforms to stay up to date on our latest posts and information. And if you have any questions, I urge you to email us at
Thank you for your time.