Hope and Stocks Surge on News of Coronavirus Breakthrough
We are so spoiled in these United States. When news broke in late 2019 of a virus that was spreading in China we all thought, "oh, our scientists will come up with a fix for that". Well up until now they haven't and the results have been devastating not only in the United States but around the world.
However, those of us with faith in the scientific community are breathing a little easier this morning as news broke of a very promising and effective treatment against coronavirus. Early tests indicate this experimental drug can speed the recovery of patients infected with COVID-19.
The antiviral medication is called remdesivir. And the United States government is now working to make that medication available to patients as soon as possible. Alright, you're probably thinking we've heard that before. And the last time the government gave medical advice we started getting warnings about drinking Lysol, but this appears to be different.
Here's what Dr. Anthony Fauci the government's top infectious-disease expert told the Associated Press:
What it has proven is that a drug can block this virus. This will be the standard of care.
According to reports, remdesivir shortened the time it takes for COVID-19 patients to recover by an average of four days. There was also a trend toward fewer fatalities in those treated by the drug.
Remdesivir is a product of the California-based biotech company Gilead Sciences. As you might imagine investors are looking favorably at that company based on this news. But, investors as a whole were positive in their responses when news of the breakthrough drug was made public.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up over 2% in trading on Wednesday. So, Wall Street is viewing remdesivir as a great advancement medically as well as economically. Perhaps this breakthrough is that light at the end of the tunnel we've all been hoping for.
Just for clarities sake, let me make sure that this is understood about the drug. Remdesivir is being touted as a treatment for coronavirus and its symptoms. Tests of the medicine suggest that it can shorten the duration of the disease and its symptoms in humans. However, it is not a vaccine against the disease. Health experts believe even in a best-case scenario that a vaccine against coronavirus is still more than a year away.