The Biden administration plans to spend more than $3 billion on projects to discover, develop and manufacture antiviral drugs for the prevention of illness and death from COVID-19.
This investment is for the Antiviral Program for Pandemics, a collaboration between the National Institutes of Health and the Department of Health and Human Services, HHS said Thursday.
HHS noted that up to $1.2 billion of the fund will support biomedical research efforts through Antiviral Drug Discovery Centers for Pathogens of Pandemic Concern.
The government would put more than $300 million toward studies and laboratory support, nearly $1 billion for preclinical and clinical assessments and $700 million to produce antiviral medicines.
“New antivirals that prevent serious COVID-19 illness and death, especially oral drugs that could be taken at home early in the course of disease, would be powerful tools for battling the pandemic and saving lives,” said Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.
“Through multidisciplinary collaborations among leading scientists in academia and industry, this investment from the American Rescue Plan to create the Antiviral Program for Pandemics will help inspire medical innovation and build on the extraordinary success we have seen in developing the COVID-19 vaccines.”