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Paxlovid, an oral drug that treats COVID-19, is set to hit the commercial market next month after being managed by the United States federal government since its release. On Wednesday, Pfizer announced the price for the medication, and it’s more than double what the government paid for it.

The federal government paid $529 per course, but Pfizer said Wednesday  it will charge $1,390 for a five-day course of the medication. The new list price doesn’t include discounts or rebates. 

The medication was formerly available free to Americans. It will stay free through the end of the year for all, Pfizer reported. The price increase won’t affect as many people in long-term care communities, as many of them are on Medicare or Medicaid. People using those benefits will be able to get it free through the end of next year. Those who are uninsured and underinsured will continue to receive the medication free of charge through 2028. 

Originally, the US bought about 24 million courses of Paxlovid from Pfizer, Reuters reported. 

Last week, the US government returned about 7.9 million courses of the medication to Pfizer. The credit for the returned doses will pay for the supplies for people using Medicare as well as those on Medicaid and those who are underinsured and uninsured, according to a Reuters report.

The pharmaceutical manufacturer cut its yearly revenue forecast because it doesn’t expect to sell as much of the medicine as previously expected. Demand for Paxlovid has decreased from last year. About 7 million courses of the medicine were used in 2022. So far this year through Oct. 1, about 3.4 million courses were used. 

Earlier this month, a study showed that people vulnerable to severe COVID-19 who took Paxlovid had a lower risk for being hospitalized with the disease or dying from any cause. The study reported that individuals over the age of 70 who weren’t extremely vulnerable to complications from COVID-19 infection didn’t seem to benefit from taking the medication.