COVID-19 Treatment

Treatments and Therapies for COVID-19– Information for Patients

Some treatments are approved by the FDA for mild-moderate COVID-19. Healthcare systems including Beth Israel Lahey Health are providing these treatments.

Here's an overview of these treatment options currently available at BILH. For additional information, visit the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website.

Talk to your health care provider to find out if you're eligible for any of these treatments, and if so, your provider can give you a referral for care at BILH or at an alternative treatment site.


Nirmatrelvir packaged with ritonavir (Paxlovid)  is an antiviral medication that can slow the replication of the virus that causes COVID-19

Who can receive Paxlovid?

Paxlovid is for adults who are at risk for severe COVID infection due to underlying medical conditions and/or advanced age:

  • Have mild to moderate COVID-19 symptoms
  • Tested positive for COVID-19 through a PCR or antigen test
  • Are within 5 days of symptoms onset

Who should NOT take Paxlovid?

Paxlovid should not be given to people with:

  • Symptoms for more than 5 days
  • Severe liver disease (Child-Pugh Class C)
  • Severe kidney disease
  • Poorly controlled HIV infection
  • An allergy to one of the medicine's ingredients

Patients taking the following medications are not recommended to take Paxlovid because of serious or life-threatening side effects or because they affect how Paxlovid works. This is not a complete list.

  • Alfuzosin
  • Pethidine, piroxicam, propoxyphene
  • Ranolazine
  • Amiodarone, dronedarone, flecainide, propafenone, quinidine
  • Colchicine
  • Lurasidone, pimozide, clozapine
  • Dihydroergotamine, ergotamine, methylergonovine
  • Lovastatin, simvastatin
  • Sildenafil (Revatio) for pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH)
  • Triazolam, oral midazolam
  • Apalutamide
  • Carbamazepine, phenobarbital, phenytoin
  • Rifampin
  • Vasopressin receptor antagonists: tolvaptan
  • John's Wort (hypericum perforatum)

What are the important possible side effects of Paxlovid?

  • Liver problems may occur, including loss of appetite, yellowing of your skin and the whites of eyes (jaundice), dark-colored urine, pale colored stools and itchy skin, stomach area (abdominal) pain.
  • Altered sense of taste
  • Diarrhea
  • High blood pressure
  • Muscle aches

How is Paxlovid administered?

Paxlovid is taken by mouth. The usual dose is 3 tablets twice a day for five days.

How can I get Paxlovid?

Speak to your provider as soon as you have symptoms and/or test positive to find out if you are eligible for Paxlovid treatment. 

Telehealth is a quick and easy way to see if Paxlovid is right for you. Learn more about free telehealth for COVID-19 treatment.


Remdesivir is an FDA-approved anti-viral medication that helps prevent progression of COVID-19.

Who can receive remdesivir?

  • Remdesivir is for adults and adolescents 12 years of age and older who:
  • Weigh at least 88 pounds (40 kg)
  • Are hospitalized for COVID-19
  • Are not hospitalized, tested positive for COVID-19 through a PCR or antigen test within the last 7 days, are exhibiting mild to moderate COVID-19 symptoms, and are at high risk of progression to severe COVID-19

Who should NOT receive remdesivir?

Remdesivir should not be given to people who had a severe allergic reaction to any ingredient in it or have had symptoms for more than seven days. Additionally, patients with a pre-existing liver condition may not be eligible for receiving remdesivir. Before taking remdesivir, please discuss your situation with your healthcare provider.

How is remdesivir administered?

Remdesivir is given through the vein (intravenous or IV infusion) over 30-60 minutes. Remdesivir is given in three doses over the course of three consecutive days.

What are the possible side effects of remdesivir?

The side effects of getting any medication through a vein may include brief pain, bleeding, bruising of the skin, soreness, swelling, and possible infection at the infusion site.

Remdesivir can cause elevations in liver function tests . Before taking Remdesivir, please notify your healthcare provider if you have liver problems and discuss eligibility for remdesivir.

Allergic reactions can happen during and after infusion with remdesivir. You will be observed for 30 minutes after your infusion to see if you have a reaction. Tell your healthcare provider right away if you experience any of the following signs and symptoms of allergic reactions:

  • Fever
  • Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
  • Low oxygen level in your blood
  • Chills
  • Tiredness
  • Fast or slow heart rate
  • Chest discomfort or pain
  • Weakness
  • Confusion
  • Nausea
  • Headache
  • Low or high blood pressure
  • Wheezing
  • Swelling of your lips, face, or throat
  • Rash including hives
  • Itching
  • Muscle aches
  • Dizziness
  • Feeling faint
  • Sweating

How do I schedule an appointment for remdesivir?

Talk to your provider as soon as you have symptoms and/or test positive to find out if you are eligible for remdesivir treatment.

COVID-19 Protection

COVID-19 vaccines are the best protection against COVID-19. There are currently no FDA-approved medications to prevent COVID-19 infection. We are currently evaluating pemivibart (Pemgarda), a new long-acting monoclonal antibody that was recently made available under an Emergency Use Authorization by the FDA.

Note on pemivibart (Pemgarda)
  • A long-acting monoclonal antibody (mAb) called pemivibart (Pemgarda) was recently given emergency use authorization for prevention of COVID-19 in persons at high risk of infection due to having a moderate-severely weakened immune system.
  • This antibody may reduce the risk of COVID-19 making you sick by limiting the virus’s ability to enter your cells, reinforcing your own body’s defenses against the virus and protection against becoming infected.
  • We do not know how well this medication will work against current variants of COVID-19.
  • It is not a replacement for vaccination.
  • BILH is currently reviewing this medication for use in our patients, but there are no published reports of the safety or effectiveness of this drug at present.