Bennett confirms anti-COVID pills to arrive Wednesday

Prime Minister Naftali Bennett confirms that Israel is slated to receive an initial shipment of the first approved anti-COVID drug from Pfizer on Wednesday, which will make it the first country outside the US to get the therapy, he says.

The Health Ministry granted emergency approval Sunday to oral therapy Paxlovid, which has shown a nearly 90 percent reduction in hospitalizations and deaths among patients most likely to suffer severe illness.

This image provided by Pfizer in October 2021 shows the company’s COVID-19 Paxlovid pills. (Pfizer via AP)

Channel 12 news said Saturday Israel had finalized an agreement to purchase about 100,000 pills, adding that Prime Minister Naftali Bennett had spoken with Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla over the weekend to finalize the deal. The anti-COVID pill will be available for free in Israel to those in high-risk groups, the report said.

Sources close to Bennett claim he has a good relationship with Bourla but “doesn’t make a lot of press conferences about it,” issuing veiled criticism of predecessor Benjamin Netanyahu.

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