Monoclonal Antibody Therapy at DRH Health
Monoclonal Antibodies are investigational therapies that have been authorized by the FDA for emergency use, as described below. The safety and effectiveness of these products have not been fully established, but due to the COVID-19 public health emergency, the FDA has established protocols for use in high-risk people.
Please review the following symptoms, the high-risk factors necessary to be a candidate, and the process for receiving the medication.
Talk to your Primary Care Provider
If you have tested positive for COVID-19, have been experiencing symptoms for less than ten (10) days, and have a high- risk factor (as listed below), you may be eligible to receive this treatment. Contact your primary care provider.
Who can receive monoclonal antibody therapy?
DRH Health provides Bamlanivimab and Regeneron’s Casirivimab + Imdevimab, both of the monoclonal antibody therapies that have received emergency use authorization from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). In published studies, monoclonal antibodies decrease a patient’s viral load, which may reduce the possibility of disease progression and hospitalization.
This medication is still being studied, but the FDA has authorized the emergency use of for the treatment of COVID-19.
- Monoclonal antibody treatment is restricted to outpatient ambulatory therapy only. Patients must have confirmed COVID-19, one or more high-risk factors, and symptoms for ten (10) days or less. Patients receive treatment at Duncan Regional Hospital.
- Patients who have one or more high-risk factors can be referred for monoclonal antibody treatment. Patients who have two or more high-risk factors will be prioritized for treatment.
COVID-19 symptoms, high-risk factors, and exclusion criteria
QUALIFYING COVID-19 SYMPTOMS
- Documented temperature above 100 F (37.8 C)
- Loss of taste or smell
- Nasal discharge
- Nasal obstruction or congestion
- Nausea or vomiting
- Shortness of breath
- Sore throat
- Subjective fever or feverish feeling
HIGH RISK FACTORS
- Age 65 or older
- Body mass index (BMI) above 35
- Chronic kidney disease
- Age 55 or older with cardiovascular disease, hypertension, or chronic respiratory disease
- Immunosuppressive disease or treatment:
- Chemotherapy for cancer
- Within one year of hematopoietic stem cell or solid organ transplant
- Untreated HIV infection with CD4 T lymphocyte count below 200, or a CD4 percentage below 14%
- Combined primary immunodeficiency disorder
- Receiving prednisone above 20 milligrams a day for more than 14 days
- Age 12 to 17 with:
- BMI at or above the 85th percentile
- Sickle cell disease
- Congenital or acquired heart disease
- Neurodevelopmental disorders, such as cerebral palsy
- Medically related technological dependence, such as a tracheostomy or gastrostomy
- Asthma or other chronic respiratory disease
This treatment is not authorized for use in patients who are:
- Hospitalized due to COVID-19
- Receiving oxygen therapy due to COVID-19
- Receiving chronic oxygen therapy due to an underlying non-COVID-19 related co-morbidity, and require an increase in baseline oxygen flow rate due to COVID-19
The Monoclonal Antibody Treatment Process
- Once your provider contacts us to order the infusion, we will contact you to schedule an appointment. We try to contact patients within 24 hours, but it may take longer over the weekend. Many people receive the injections the same day.
- Monoclonal antibody treatment is an injection therapy delivered in 4 subcutaneous injections in either the upper arms, abdomen (avoiding the waistline) or thigh areas. The overall injection process takes about 1-2 hours, including setup, injections, and observation after treatment.
- Visitors are not permitted routinely. You are welcome to bring a book or reading material.
Cost for the treatment and infusion
DRH Health is providing COVID-19 injection treatments for no cost to patients. Please be aware that if you have insurance, DRH Health will bill your insurance provider for the cost to administer the injection. Current regulations require your insurance to pay for the full cost, so you will not have any out-of-pocket costs (deductible, co-pay or co-insurance). If you do not have insurance, the government is currently covering the cost to administer the injection via the CARES Act.