As COVID-19 infections in the U.S. hit new highs, President Joe Biden announced that the country would buy at least 20 million courses of Pfizer’s (NYSE:PFE) COVID-19 pill Paxlovid.
The government had planned on purchasing half as much of the drug, which won regulatory authorization in late December for certain patients with a high risk of developing severe COVID-19.
Biden also vowed that it had offered Pfizer additional resources to accelerate the manufacture of the drug.
The federal government is ready to use the Defense Production Act to spur quicker production of the drug.
Pfizer plans on providing roughly 10 million treatment courses to the government by the end of June. It plans on providing the additional 10 million courses by September 30.
Pfizer has previously announced that Paxlovid had an efficacy rate of 89% in a study focused on its potential to reduce hospitalization or death from COVID-19. The Phase 3 study involved more than 2,000 high-risk adults.
Pfizer CEO Dr. Albert Bourla said that data indicates that Paxlovid remains robust protection against omicron.
“We are pleased to be working with the U.S. government to help broaden patient access to this potentially game-changing therapy,” Bourla said in a statement.
In November, SVB Leerink analyst Geoffrey Porges predicted Pfizer’s revenue in 2022 could surpass $100 billion. If that prediction proves to be accurate, the company would likely be the world’s biggest pharmaceutical company by revenue.
For context, Pfizer’s annual revenue was $41.9 billion in 2020.
Nevertheless, the company’s stock has fallen in recent days. Today, it dipped 4.82% to $54.53.