U.S. Food and Drug Administration Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update: November 23, 2020 | site |


(Information contained in U.S. Food and Drug Administration [FDA] press release: November 23, 2020)

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) continued to take action in the ongoing response to the COVID-19 pandemic:
  • On Nov. 20, the FDA approved an abbreviated new drug application for succinylcholine chloride injection USP 200 mg/10 mL, which is indicated, in addition to general anesthesia, to facilitate tracheal intubation and to provide skeletal muscle relaxation during surgery or mechanical ventilation. Side effects of succinylcholine chloride injection include anaphylaxis, hyperkalemia, and malignant hyperthermia. The FDA recognizes the increased demand for certain products during the COVID-19 public health emergency, and we remain deeply committed to facilitating access to safe and effective medical products to help address critical needs of the American public.
  • The FDA, on Nov. 21, issued an EUA for casirivimab and imdevimab, administered together by intravenous (IV) infusion, for the treatment of mild to moderate COVID-19 in adults and pediatric patients (12 years of age or older weighing at least 40 kilograms [about 88 pounds]) with positive results of direct SARS-CoV-2 viral testing and who are at high risk for progressing to severe COVID-19. In a clinical trial of patients with COVID-19, casirivimab and imdevimab, administered together, were shown to reduce COVID-19-related hospitalization or emergency room visits in patients at high risk for disease progression within 28 days after treatment when compared to placebo. The safety and effectiveness of this investigational therapy for use in the treatment of COVID-19 continues to be evaluated. Casirivimab and imdevimab are not authorized for patients who are hospitalized due to COVID-19 or require oxygen therapy due to COVID-19.
  • The FDA also recently posted a new infographic, The Path for a COVID-19 Vaccine from Research to Emergency Use Authorization, to explain a potential pathway for vaccines.
  • Testing updates:
    • As of Nov. 18, 289 tests are authorized by the FDA under EUAs; these include 224 molecular tests, 58 antibody tests, and 7 antigen tests.