On June 16th, new medical findings said dexamethasone had shown clear signs of reducing deaths among covid-19 patients.
The drug has shown promising signs of reducing deaths among patients needing oxygen or on ventilators.
However, there are many questions about the cost of the drug and the time taken to cure patients.
According to BBC, patients taking dexamethasone take approximately 10 days to recover from covid-19.
Moreover, the cost of the drug is neither cheap nor expensive.
According to Chief investigator Professor Peter Horby, the drug costs at least £35 to save a life. This is about Ksh4, 688.
“There is a clear benefit. The treatment is up to 10 days of dexamethasone and it costs about £5 per patient. So essentially it costs £35 to save a life. This is a drug that is globally available,” he said.
Additionally, the country is available all over the world.
However, the drug only seems to help those patients with breathing problems or on ventilators, not people with mild symptoms.
It helps in reducing number of covid-19 deaths.
Dexamethasone saves one life out of every 8 patients treated while on ventilators. It also saves one life out of every 25 treated while on oxygen.
The drug’s effectiveness was discovered during a clinical trial led by a team from Oxford University.
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Approximately 2000 patients were given dexamethasone and were compared with 4000 people who did not receive the drug.
The drug reduce death rate of people on ventilators from 40% to 28%. For patients who needed oxygen, the risk of death was reduced from 25% to 20%.