COVID-19

Doctors Hope FDA-Authorized Antibody Treatment Can Ease COVID-19 Hospitalizations

Broward Health Medical Center has been offering the monoclonal antibody infusion, which has been recently authorized by the FDA for emergency use

Scientists now say they've proved monoclonal antibodies can help keep some COVID-19 sufferers from becoming hospitalized.

Doctors at Broward Health Medical Center are offering infusions for patients with mild to moderate COVID-19 symptoms — a treatment that could keep patients out of the hospital with coronavirus. 

The hospital can treat 20 patients a day with the monoclonal antibody infusion. Patients who can receive this treatment must have mild to moderate symptoms and receive this in the first 10 days of becoming ill. 

The treatment takes 30 minutes and patients must stay an hour after for monitoring. 

A local hospital is trying to spread the word about the availability and success of monoclonal antibody treatment. NBC 6's Alyssa Hyman reports

“We’re increasing our capacity here at Broward Health to be able to provide more of these infusions over the next several weeks,” said Dr. Aldo Calvo, Medical Director of Ambulatory Services. 

The antibody treatments can be a way to get ahead of severe sickness. 

“By reducing the viral load, you reduce symptoms, improve the road to recovery and hopefully prevent any unnecessary hospitalization,” said Dr Calvo.

The FDA has authorized emergency use of the infusions. They’ve also loosened their criteria for patients who can get it.

Patients must be over 12, at least 90 pounds and suffering from a chronic illness that could lead to severe COVID-19 symptoms. Your doctor can prescribe the treatment if they believe you fit the criteria. 

Samuel Burgess was given the antibody treatment to fight his symptoms. He had been vaccinated but still became infected with the virus.

“I’ve got it and doing everything I know to do to try and get rid of it,” said Burgess.

On Friday, doctors at Broward Health reported 275 people in the hospital with COVID-19 and 97% of those patients were unvaccinated. 

Doctors are worried those unvaccinated will continue to become severely ill. 

The vaccination rate has climbed in Miami-Dade County this week, with 71.5% of those 12-years-old and older were vaccinated. The rate has climbed in Broward County at 60.5%

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