Bipartisan support for at-home COVID treatment

Last Tuesday, in a White House briefing, Dr. Anthony Fauci highlighted what he called an “underutilized” treatment in the battle against COVID-19. Monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) can be given to patients twelve and over who exhibit early disease symptoms and can reduce the risk of hospitalization or death by 70% to 85%. 

“We have three anti-SARS-CoV-2 monoclonal antibody products that have currently had Emergency Use Authorization from the FDA,” said Fauci. “There’s the Lilly product — the bamlanivimab plus etesevimab.  There’s the Regeneron project — a product referred to as REGEN-COV.  And then there’s the GSK and Vir product.  Each of these products targets the spike protein of SARS-CoV-2.”

mAbs Gaining Ground

These treatments are not new. They were developed during the previous administration – both former president Donald Trump and current Texas Governor Greg Abbot were treated with mAbs when they contracted COVID-19. However, despite the success of mAbs, they have been slow to take off, with some citing political divisions as the cause. 

Now, the Biden administration has signaled its approval for the treatment, and leaders around the country are enthusiastically endorsing it. “We are working to raise awareness about monoclonal antibodies because they save lives and reduce severe illness and risk of hospitalization,” said Governor Ron DeSantis in a press release this August. The Governor’s political opponents are similarly coming on board in a rare show of unity. Rivals Representative Carlos G Smith (D-49) and Agricultural Commissioner Nikki Fried (D-FL) are both spreading the word; Smith took to Twitter to let constituents know that mAbs “work extraordinarily well … They are safe. They’re free…and help keep [patients] alive.”

mAbs at Home

mAbs are administered via infusion or injection and are most effective when taken within 4-5 days of infection. Best of all, they can be provided anywhere, even one’s home, making them convenient for patients in isolation or who feel under the weather. 

They are currently subsidized by the government, making them accessible at no cost to eligible patients. Dr. Fauci recommended calling 877-332-6585 or visiting the NIH website to learn more about mAbs. 

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