By CBS 2 Chicago Staff

(AP/CBS) — Pfizer is seeking authorization for its experimental COVID-19 pill after reporting it cut hospitalization and death by 90%, AP reports.

Pfizer said it will ask the FDA and international regulators to authorize its pill as soon as possible, after independent experts recommended halting the company’s study based on the strength of its results. Once Pfizer applies, the FDA could make a decision within weeks or months.

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This week, the U.K. Becomes first country to approve the use of Merck’s antiviral drug to treat COVID-19.

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Merk’s pill was licensed for adults 18 and older who have tested positive for COVID-19 and have at least one risk factor for developing severe disease. The drug, known as molnupiravir, is intended to be taken twice a day for five days by people at home with mild to moderate COVID-19.

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© Copyright 2021 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

CBS 2 Chicago Staff