SARS-CoV-2-Linked Hospitalization, ED Encounters Rare After Paxlovid

TUESDAY, June 28, 2022 — Hospitalization and emergency department encounters related to severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) occur rarely during the five to 15 days after Paxlovid treatment is dispensed for mild-to-moderate COVID-19, according to research published in the June 24 issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

Deborah E. Malden, D.Phil., from the CDC in Atlanta, and colleagues used electronic health record data from Kaiser Permanente Southern California to describe hospital admissions and emergency department encounters related to SARS-CoV-2 infections during the five to 15 days after a five-day course of Paxlovid. Of the 5,287 persons aged ≥12 years who received Paxlovid during Dec. 31, 2021, to May 26, 2022, 73 and 8 percent had received three or more doses of COVID-19 vaccine and were unvaccinated, respectively.

The researchers identified six hospitalizations and 39 emergency department encounters considered related to SARS-CoV-2 infection during the five to 15 days after Paxlovid treatment was dispensed, representing <1 percent of all patients to whom Paxlovid was dispensed. Of these 45 patients, 47 percent were aged ≥65 years and 78 percent had one or more underlying conditions.

“When administered as an early-stage treatment, Paxlovid might prevent COVID-19-related hospitalization among persons with mild-to-moderate COVID-19 cases who are at risk for progression to severe disease,” the authors write.

Several authors disclosed financial ties to pharmaceutical companies, including Pfizer, the manufacturer of Paxlovid.

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