The end of the COVID-19 pandemic depends on new treatments and the ways in which societies respond.
Germany, France, Spain, India, UK and Israel are closely working together with the World Health Organization to end the pandemic.
Israel received this Thursday a first shipment of Pfizer's anti-Covid pill, with Prime Minister Naftali Bennett hailing it as critical amid a surge of cases driven by the highly infectious Omicron variant.
Image Source: Scientific American | Oral therapeutics could significantly reduce the chance of progression to severe disease.
The US Food and Drug Administration last week authorised Pfizer's Paxlovid pill for high-risk people aged 12 and up.
In trials, the treatment has been shown to reduce Covid hospitalisations and deaths by 88 percent among at-risk people.
The pills landed in Israel as coronavirus infections are surging.
Health authorities reported nearly 4,000 new cases Wednesday, a high not seen since September.
The oral treatments block the virus' ability to replicate and should withstand variants, experts say.
Until now, the main treatments for Covid-19 have been synthetic antibodies or Gilead's antiviral remdesivir, which are administered by infusion.
The United States has paid $5.3 billion for 10 million courses of Pfizer's new treatment, as well as $2.2 billion for treatment from rival Merck, whose pill appears to be less effective.
The European Union's drug regulator has also allowed member states to use Pfizer's Covid medications ahead of formal approval as an emergency measure.
Ran Balicer, chairman of Israel's national expert panel on Covid-19, said the drug could "dramatically reduce risk of severe illness, potentially thus also reducing the overall hospital burden".
The clinical management of COVID-19 has come a long way since the early days of the pandemic.
Image Source: CNBC | Israel tests 4th Covid vaccine dose
On Monday an Israeli hospital began a trial of a fourth vaccine booster shot ahead of a potential national rollout of additional doses.
4.2 million Israelis out of a population of 9.4 citizens have gotten three shots of coronavirus vaccine.
The response to Omicron and other variants may include both accelerating the rollout of booster doses of existing vaccines and developing new formulations better targeted to this variant.
Achieving a global consensus on public-health measures will likely be an important step toward controlling the Covid-19 pandemic.
Mihir Gadhvi is a Director at Illustrake Digital Marketing Services Pvt Ltd. He has commercially focused on social media marketing through consulting and strategies while also helping various brands in growing their businesses. He has worked with over 200 start-ups, SMEs, brands and agencies across the world, offering strategic media support services that increase ROI. Illustrake helps businesses and individuals with all aspects of Digital Marketing Strategy, Social Media Marketing, Search Engine Marketing (SEO & PPC), Branding & Designing, Video Animations, Web/App Development, and Conversion Optimization. He is also the co-founder of 3nions and social media manager of a tech-based resource.