Starting Wednesday, Broward Health can use a cocktail of antibodies -- approved for emergency use by the FDA -- that could really give promising results for people diagnosed with COVID-19
"We are administering monoclonal antibodies for the treatment of individuals who are COVID-19 positive with mild to moderate symptoms," said Aldo Calvo, D.O., Medical Director of Ambulatory Services, of Broward Health.
Dr. Calvo said if you are within 10 days of onset symptoms, 65 and older, immunocompromised or have a chronic condition like diabetes or COPD, you can get the IV.
"It's given over an infusion over 45 minutes and it’s really for the treatment of those individuals who just recently tested positive who are having low to moderate symptoms," Dr. Calvo said. "Those individuals with possible low-grade fevers, cough, some discharge, possible nasal discharge."
The antibodies, a combination of bamlanivimab and etesevimab, essentially keep the virus from replicating into normal cells in our body, reducing the damage and improving recovery time. Patients can see improvement within a day.
"We want to prevent their hospitalizations, and we want to prevent their death and this is very important," Dr. Calvo said. "Other hospitals are doing this, but the main caveat here is that many of our physicians in our community might not know about this treatment or maybe do know about it, but don’t know how to get access for their patients."
Other local medical systems like the University of Miami and Baptist Health already administer the treatment. The treatment translates to hope for those who are waiting to be vaccinated or just not ready for the vaccine and are still at risk of infection.
"As a director of ambulatory care and working with our community physicians and our patients, it's so reinvigorating to know that now we have a therapeutic that can help," Dr. Calvo told NBC 6.
Broward Health says you can talk to your doctor and if you qualify, they can write up an order form to receive the IV at the hospital.