AUSTIN (KXAN) — Health care providers and pharmacies are beginning to get shipments of antiviral pills to treat COVID-19, including Tarrytown Pharmacy in Austin.

Tarrytown has the pill made by Merck called “molnupiravir.” The U.S. Food and Drug Administration authorized the pill in late December, along with Pfizer’s competing drug, paxlovid.

Paxlovid isn’t widely available and is currently being given in hospital or clinical settings, because it can negatively affect the kidneys, so extra tests need to be done before prescribing those.

Pharmacist-In-Charge at Tarrytown Pharmacy Rannon Ching told KXAN on Friday these treatments are not preventive, but they are great to treat mild to moderate cases of COVID-19.

“It’s pretty cool. So the antivirals actually go and attack or attach to the COVID virus and make it so it can’t replicate or further stay in your body,” he explained.

Tarrytown has gotten 40 bottles of molnupiravir, which is one full patient treatment per bottle. They’ve been dispensing the treatment for about two weeks now and have gotten a few prescriptions.

The pharmacy is expecting to get another shipment this week.