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  • Q. What are the criteria to be prescribed oral antiviral medications?
    A. Both Paxlovid (from Pfizer) and Lagevrio (molnupiravir) (from Merck) are available only by prescription. They are for people who have developed symptoms within five days and have tested positive either with an RT-PCR or antigen test, and who are at high risk for severe COVID-19 illness. To discuss your eligibility, schedule an online appointment with a FirstVitals healthcare provider.
  • Q. What is the difference between Paxlovid and Lagevrio?
    A. Both Paxlovid and Lagevrio work to keep the virus that causes COVID-19 from replicating. Each medication works and is administered in a slightly different way. Paxlovid is administered via three tablets taken orally twice daily for five days. Lagevrio is administered via four tablets taken orally every 12 hours for five days. In addition, Paxlovid has many known interactions with other medications, while Lagevrio has no known interactions.
  • Q. How effective are these oral antiviral medications?
    A. While data is still somewhat limited, in one study Paxlovid was found to reduce hospital admission or death by about 88 percent in people who had COVID-19 (compared with placebo), as long as they had received the medication within five days of symptom onset. Lagevrio has a lower efficacy rate than Paxlovid; the rate of reduced hospitalization or death was shown in one study to be about 30 percent (compared with placebo); however, newer data is forthcoming.
  • Q. Is Paxlovid FDA-EUA authorized?
    A. On December 22, 2021, the FDA issued an emergency use authorization (EUA) for Paxlovid. The EUA can be found here: For more details, visit the FDA at
  • Q. Is Lagevrio FDA-EUA authorized?
    A. On December 23, 2021, the FDA issues an emergency use authorization (EUA) for Lagevrio. The EUA can be found here: More details about Lagevrio are available here:
  • Q. If I am prescribed oral antiviral, how do I obtain the medication?
    A. It is recommended that you designate a COVID-free person to pick up your medication at your local pharmacy to avoid contact with the public. The FirstVitals nurse will ask you for the name of the person who will pick up the medication on your behalf.
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