New Zealand has joined a global trend of developing and manufacturing a new drug to fight the disease, which kills more than 1.2 million people in the country every year.
New Zealand has been the first country in the world to declare its new drug approved, a milestone that was hailed by some as a “watershed moment” in the fight against the virus.
It is the first time a pharmaceutical company has licensed a new antiviral drug to treat the infection and, after more than two years of research, the results are encouraging.
“We’re very excited to be announcing the drug for the hepatitis C, a rare, devastating, and debilitating disease,” said John O’Neill, the country’s Minister of Health and Social Care.
The drug, called MIX, is being tested in clinical trials and the first in New Zealand to be approved for use in patients with the disease.
It can also be used in conjunction with other existing treatments and is a treatment of choice for those with liver cirrhosis.
It comes at a time when New Zealand is under pressure to improve its response to the virus, which is spread through the air and by contaminated water.
More than 80,000 cases of hepatitis C have been reported across the country.
The new drug is made by a British company called Cymbalta, and has been developed with a team of 40 researchers from universities around the world.
“It’s a very exciting step forward, and I think it’s going to be very, very exciting for the future,” Dr John Latham, a liver specialist from the University of Auckland, told The New Zealand Herald.
“I hope it can be adopted in other countries as well.”
Cymbaltas chief executive Dr Nick Taylor said the company would make it easier for people to take up new medicines, which he described as “the next logical step”.
“I think we’re now in a position where we’ve got a very good understanding of how the virus works and how we can help people to live healthier lives and have better outcomes,” he said.
“So there are opportunities to do more in this area.”
New Zealand’s new drug MIX has been approved for treatment of hepatitisC (ICIS) in a clinical trialThe New Zealand Drug Administration (NZDA) approved the drug Mix for the treatment of the condition.
“The drug is a safe and effective first-in-class antiviral treatment, and will allow us to rapidly introduce MIX to patients, while continuing to deliver the high-quality health care that we have promised,” a spokesperson for the country said.
The announcement comes just days after New Zealand announced it was considering the use of a “first-in, first-out” approach to dealing with the virus by rolling out a “preventative” vaccine.
The vaccine would be administered through injection or by pill, and would be made available through the countrys public health system.Newshub.