The U.S. government plans to increase its stockpile of the COVID-19 therapy sotrovimab to make sure that “patients and physicians” in the event of a severe flu season will be able to quickly find the treatment, NPR reported.
For most of the 20th century, the COVID-19 treatment has been used on regular flu patients and was considered one of the strongest drugs on the market. However, in 1985, CDC’s Atlanta testing lab began testing the COVID-19 in higher-risk patients, such as those with HIV, and found that it caused flu-like symptoms but not the flu-like condition associated with the drug, according to a Cornell University biomedical engineer. Since then, the drug has been ditched as a standard form of therapy for the flu, and it was discontinued for use in HIV patients as well in 2005. The FDA approved a new and improved version of the drug in 2012 for use in individuals with HIV.