Deaconess has received an allotment of bamlanivimab (BAM), a newly-released monoclonal antibody treatment for COVID-19. This drug received emergency use authorization (EUA) from the FDA last week. Indiana received 2,750 initial doses, and Deaconess received 180 doses on Friday.
BAM is for treating mild-to-moderate COVID-19 in patients who are at high risk of progressing to severe COVID-19 and/or hospitalization.
This treatment is only given via infusion, and Deaconess is able to treat up to 33 patients per day. Providers are identifying COVID-19 positive patients who are at high risk of severe disease/hospitalization, and are directing them on next steps.
“Our pharmacy and infusion services team moved quickly to set up a new infusion location and process (separate from current infusion areas), and began treating patients late Friday afternoon; since then, almost 30 patients were treated over the weekend,” said Dr. Brad Scheu, Vice President, Chief Medical Officer, Deaconess Clinic.
“Bamlanivimab is one of the tools that will hopefully help reduce hospitalization numbers and save lives. However, there are limited amounts of this medication available, and bamlanivimab alone will not offset rising case numbers and hospitalizations we are already experiencing. We need the community to make every effort to reduce infection rates and spread by limiting gatherings, wearing masks, washing hands and maintaining social distance,” said Dr. Scheu.
More information about bamlanivimab, as provided by the FDA, is available at www.deaconess.com/antibodytreatment.