Pfizer said its COVID-19 pill reduces the risk of hospitalization or death by 89%, a statement from the US pharmaceutical giant said Friday.

No deaths were reported in patients who received the company's COVID-19 oral antiviral pill PAXLOVID in the overall study population through Day 28, compared to 10 deaths in patients who received a placebo, it said.

The study was based on data from 1,219 adults who were enrolled by Sept. 29 and had a laboratory-confirmed diagnosis of SARS-CoV-2 infection within a five-day period, as well as at least one medical condition associated with an increased risk of developing severe illness from COVID-19, it added.

The company said it will submit the study to the US' Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for emergency use authorization as soon as possible.

The news makes Pfizer the second company in the world to develop a pill against the coronavirus after Merck's oral antiviral treatment drug Molnupiravir, announced on Oct. 1.