CNN PHILIPPINES — The Philippines will conduct the clinical trial of Avigan, the anti-flu drug from Japan that can potentially cure COVID-19, starting August 17.
Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire on Monday said the Avigan tablets sent by Japan will be tested on 100 patients, who will be recruited from different hospitals.
The study will be random and comparative to test the effectivity of the medicine. The health official explained that patients will be split into two sets: one given the existing supportive care for COVID-19 patients, while the other set will be given the same care plus the Avigan tablets.
"Hindi alam ng paseyente ano matatanggap nila," Vergeire said in a media forum.
The patients who will be part of the study must be 18-74 years old, they should agree to use contraceptives and/or condoms, they should be cleared of heart and kidney problems, among others. Vergeire said the protocol to be carried out has been approved by the Food and Drug Administration.
President Rodrigo Duterte earlier said the study was given a budget of ₱18 million.