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Press Center

Apr 15, 2021

Part of the Critical Drug Reserve in COVID-19 Response

Toronto, Ontario, April 15, 2021 — As Canadians remain impacted by the spread of COVID-19, Apotex, Canada’s largest pharmaceutical company has been awarded a contract with the Government of Canada to supply the Critical Drug Reserve of Dexamethasone tablets in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Dexamethasone is a corticosteroid used in a wide range of conditions for its anti-inflammatory and immunosuppressant effects.

According to the World Health Organization, “It was tested in hospitalized patients with COVID-19 in the United Kingdom’s national clinical trial RECOVERY and was found to have benefits for critically ill patients. According to preliminary findings shared with WHO (and now available as a preprint), for patients on ventilators, the treatment was shown to reduce mortality by about one third, and for patients requiring only oxygen, mortality was cut by about one fifth.”

After being informed of the outcome of the competitive process, Apotex significantly ramped up production to manufacture the supply, which represents five times the total current market demand for dexamethasone. The scale up will continue throughout 2021 and will ensure Canadians currently being treated with the drug for approved indications have continued access.

“At Apotex, we are proud to produce more than 95% of our portfolio for Canadians in Canada,” said Raymond Shelley, SVP, Commercial Operations-Canada & Caribbean. “This pandemic has further shown the benefits of domestic manufacturing as our fully integrated facilities allow us to easily adjust our manufacturing and distribution in order to meet urgent government and patient needs.”

Prior to the announcement today, Apotex has remained committed to supporting Canadians throughout the pandemic through multiple donations of hydroxychloroquine to clinical trials and the National Emergency Strategic Stockpile, donations of N95 surgical masks and hand sanitizer to frontline healthcare employees and increased hiring to ensure the continuity of its operations.

About Apotex Inc.
Apotex Inc. is a proudly Canadian, global pharmaceutical company that produces high-quality, affordable medicines for patients around the world. Apotex employs almost 8,000 people worldwide in manufacturing, R&D, and commercial operations.  Apotex Inc. exports to more than 100 countries and territories and operates in more than 45 countries, with a significant presence in Canada, the US, Mexico, and India. Through vertical integration, Apotex is comprised of multiple divisions and affiliates including Apotex Inc., focused on generics; Apobiologix, a division of Apotex Inc. focused on biosimilar development; Aveva, an affiliate of Apotex Inc. fully integrated global developer and manufacturer of complete transdermal solutions; Apotex Consumer Products, a division of Apotex Inc. focused on brand name products; and Global Active Pharmaceutical Ingredients (GAPI), a division of Apotex Inc. focused on the manufacturing of active pharmaceutical ingredients (API) for Apotex and third parties. For more information visit:


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