From the beginning of the pandemic, we’ve always said that the one thing we were missing was treatment.

We now have learned so much from our mistakes of the past such as putting people on ventilators who may have been better off with oxygen, telling people who were seriously ill with COVID-19 to stay home and wait it out, etc.

But the one missing piece of the puzzle has always been treatment.

We have vaccines. We have many different ideas for treatment modalities that have floated around over the past couple of years—some based in science, and some more theoretical, and yet very few have been brought to market until now.

That’s why so many people have opted for the off-label use of other medications like Hydroxychloroquine, Ivermectin, and others to try to stop COVID-19 in its tracks—or at least to avoid the most serious cases.

One treatment that was extremely effective is the monoclonal antibodies drip but we now know that there is a shortage of that all over the country and so we’ve limited it to patients at the highest risk.

Needless to say, we’ve been in desperate need of some other ideas.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has finally selected New Jersey as one of 30 states to receive Pfizer's Paxlovid and Merck’s Molnupiravir. Much like Tamiflu, these antiviral pills are meant to be taken within the first couple of days of symptoms and have shown effectiveness in preventing hospitalizations.

New Jersey was allotted 6,340 doses, so it’ll probably be a while before these treatments are available to you since, according to our newsroom, both of these drugs have been shipped to only 50 Walgreens pharmacy locations all over the state. That means that only those at the highest risk will even be in the running to receive these drugs. But if they are successful, it’s promising news.

The next step would be ramping up production to market these pills for widespread use as a prescription drug. Then hopefully we can soon see the day where at the first sign of a serious and/or life-threatening case of COVID-19, a doctor can prescribe it to you and you’ll be out of the woods.

Opinions expressed in the post above are those of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Judi Franco only.

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