NEW DELHI: Drug firm Cipla said it has increased the production of COVID-19 drug remdesivir two-fold since the last wave of the pandemic.
In view of increased demand for the drug due to a surge in COVID-19 cases, the Centre on Sunday prohibited the exports of remdesivir injection and its active pharmaceutical ingredients (API) till the situation improves.
“We have scaled up the production of remdesivir by 2x from the last wave of the pandemic. Given the unprecedented demand for the drug, we have now further ramped up our capacities through our network, to service the demand,” Cipla said in a statement.
Seven Indian companies are producing the injection under voluntary licensing agreement with Gilead Sciences, USA. They have an installed capacity of about 38.80 lakh units per month, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare had said on Sunday.
The Department of Pharmaceuticals has been in contact with the domestic manufacturers to ramp up the production of remdesivir, it added.
Cipla also said given the spike in cases and surge in demand, it is facing a shortage of another drug Tocilizumab and is working closely with its partner in taking necessary steps to ensure its availability.
“We expect intermittent supplies as the demand outstrips supply with some more receipts at the earliest,” Cipla added.
The Centre on Tuesday said doctors should ensure “rational and judicious” use of remdesivir, underlining it is to be given only to serious COVID-19 patients in hospitals and is not to be used in home settings.