DOH unlikely to start Avigan trials on Monday

Published August 7, 2020, 3:11 PM

by Analou De Vera 

The Department of Health (DoH) is unlikely to meet its target of starting the clinical trials for the Japanese drug Avigan on Monday as there are still necessary documents that need to be accomplished.


“Nung una, sabi namin Aug. 10 tayo mag-start pero hindi pa napa-finalize ‘yung legal documents natin (At first, we said we would start on Aug. 10 but our legal documents have not been finalized yet),” said Health Undersecretary Maria Rosario Vergeire in a press briefing.

“We (will) just inform everybody kapag talagang final na (We (will) just inform everybody when it is really final). But it is going to happen soon already,” she added.

“Inaayos nalang namin ang final arrangements, legal documents and all, and we are set to start soon (We are just fixing the final arrangements, legal documents and all, and we are set to start soon),” she furthered.

The Japanese Embassy in Manila on Thursday announced the delivery of Avigan to the country. The trial aims to investigate the safety and efficacy of Avigan in treating coronavirus disease (COVID-19)  patients.

“This is a donation coming from the Japanese government wherein they have provided for 100 patients,” said Vergeire.

Vergeire said that the clinical trials for Avigan, whose generic name is favipiravir, have been approved by the Food and Drug Administration and the Ethics Review Board.

Last May, Vergeire identified Sta. Ana Hospital, Dr. Jose N. Rodriguez Memorial Hospital, and Quirino Memorial Medical Center as the venue for the clinical testing.

Clinical trials for Avigan are also being conducted in other countries such as Japan, China, United States of America, Italy, and Russia.