Both Pfizer and Merck rolled out pills that could help keep people out of the hospital if they catch COVID. Pfizer says its pill will reduce the risk of death or hospitalization by 89% in people who got it within 3 days of symptoms starting, while the Merck pill will reduce the risk by 50%. Neither pill is a cure, but doctors say that these pills can be important additions to hospital-based treatments, providing more evidence that we can tame the virus. Despite this, it is not a replacement for vaccines. These pills serve as an early treatment, while the vaccines are prevention. Currently, there is not much data about the safety of these pills, and doctors are closely monitoring the volunteers in these trials for any evidence that the drug may cause kidney or bone marrow damage. For more information about this pill, click here. For more information on vaccines and COVID preparedness, click here.
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