People in the UK who test positive for coronavirus could be sent antiviral capsules or tablets to take at home by autumn, the government has announced.
Speaking at a news conference at Downing Street this afternoon, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said he has launched a new Antivirals Taskforce to identify the most promising antiviral medicines.
The government aim to launch at least two effective treatments this year – “either in a tablet or capsule form” – that people can take at home if they’ve been in contact with someone who has coronavirus or if they’ve tested positive for the virus.
It’s hoped the treatments could stop infections spreading and speed up recovery time, with Boris Johnson adding that the aim is to make them “safely and rapidly available by autumn”.
“Our new Antivirals Taskforce will seek to develop innovative treatments you can take at home to stop COVID-19 in its tracks,” the Prime Minister said.
“These could provide another vital defence against any future increase in infections and save more lives.”
While Boris seemed optimistic about the future of treatments for Covid-19, he did warn of a third coronavirus wave, saying: “There will be another wave of COVID at some stage this year.”