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New Survey Results Demonstrate Increased Interest in COVID-19 Antiviral Therapies

COVID-19 remains a very real threat for patients across the country who are living with chronic conditions. This winter, weekly hospital admissions peaked at 35,000 in the U.S. and, in combination with the rise of other respiratory viruses like the flu and RSV, patients who contract COVID-19 continue to suffer from severe symptoms, hospitalization, and even death. Moreover, individuals living with chronic conditions are disproportionately impacted by the virus. Upon diagnosis, patients with conditions such as diabetes, obesity, hypertension, and heart disease are more likely to experience severe symptoms of the virus, and those with cardiovascular conditions have higher mortality rates due to COVID-19.

To protect patients from this continued threat, Americans must be able to access the necessary vaccines and treatments to avoid severe symptoms and long-lasting impacts of COVID-19. Time and time again, antiviral therapies for COVID-19 have proven critical in the fight against the virus. Studies showed that one COVID-19 antiviral treatment decreased the risk of death by 47% and the risk of hospitalization by 24% over a six-month period.

CCPA recently conducted a survey of 800 Americans age 50 and older, and found majority, bipartisan support for increased access to antiviral treatments. Top results from the survey include:

  • If they were to contract the virus, 55% of those surveyed expressed interest in receiving an antiviral treatment to combat their symptoms, with 29% indicating that they were very likely to be interested in receiving treatment.
  • 56% of those surveyed were in favor of proposals that require insurance companies to cover antiviral therapies at low or no cost to patients.
  • 76% of those surveyed expressed their support for proposals to make it easier for pharmacies to prescribe and dispense antivirals.

In order to maintain maximum efficacy, antiviral treatments for COVID-19 must be administered within five days of the first symptoms of COVID-19. Patients do not have time to wait to navigate complex barriers to care or locate antiviral treatments as they look to prevent serious symptoms or hospitalization. To ensure that all patients have timely access to critical protection against severe COVID-19, health insurers must institute low or zero-dollar copays for these antiviral treatments.

State officials and health insurers must follow suit and take action to expand access to effective COVID-19 treatments today.