Pfizer agrees to let other companies make its COVID-19 pill

By MARIA CHENG AP Medical Writer

LONDON (AP) — Drugmaker Pfizer Inc. has signed a deal with a U.N.-backed group to allow other manufacturers to make its experimental COVID-19 pill.

The move could help make the treatment available to more than half of the world's population. In a statement on Tuesday, Pfizer said it would grant a license for the antiviral pill to the Medicines Patent Pool.

The agreement lets generic drug companies make the pill for use in 95 countries. The deal excludes some large countries with manufacturing capacity. But health officials say the fact that the deal was struck before Pfizer's pill has been authorized anywhere could help end the pandemic more quickly.

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