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26 May 2020

MHRA approves remdesivir as the first medicine to treat COVID-19 in the UK

Introduced by

Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency

Targeted at



Delivered scientific opinion on 26 May 2020

Stated aims

To support the use of remdesivir to treat patients with COVID-19


Following evaluation, Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) issues approval for the use of remdesivir to treat COVID-19. This is its first positive scientific opinion under the early access to medicines scheme (EAMS). EAMS was set up by the MHRA to give patients with life-threatening or seriously debilitating conditions access to medicines that are not yet licensed, but when there is a clear, unmet medical need.

Following the delivery of MHRA's scientific opinion, the antiviral drug remdesivir will be made available to patients meeting certain clinical criteria to support their recovery from COVID-19 in hospital. Allocation of the drug will be based on expert clinical advice and will take into consideration the situation where it is most likely to provide the greatest benefit.


Gov.uk press release

Gov.uk decision – on early access to medicine scheme