South Carolina Encourages Monoclonal Antibody Treatment for Certain COVID-19 Patients
The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) confirmed on October 8, 2021, it encourages healthcare facilities, providers, and eligible patients to take advantage of monoclonal antibody (mAb) treatments for patients with COVID-19 in South Carolina.
“Where even just a few weeks ago, South Carolina was struggling to get enough doses of monoclonal antibody treatments to meet the demand of the recent Delta surge,” stated Dr. Edward Simmer, DHEC Director, in a press statement.
To date, 32,686 COVID-19 patients in South Carolina have been treated with monoclonal antibodies. No anaphylactic reactions or other serious adverse events have been reported in South Carolina.
Currently, mAb treatments for people with COVID-19 are authorized by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) under an emergency use authorization (EUA). These treatments work by directly blocking the effect of the COVID-19 virus in patients that are already infected.
The main target of SARS-CoV-2 virus-neutralizing monoclonal antibodies is the surface spike glycoprotein that mediates viral entry into host cells, says the FDA.
Recent data shows that mAb treatments successfully reduce the chance of severe disease, hospitalization, and death by 70%.
Moreover, mAb treatment shortens the duration of symptoms by an average of four days for those people.
The FDA has granted EUAs for three mAb treatments: etesevimab and bamlanivimab, REGEN-COV (casirivimab and imdevimab), and sotrovimab.
Those eligible to receive the treatment are at-risk individuals ages 12 and older who test positive for COVID-19 and exhibit mild to moderate symptoms that began within the last ten days. In addition, individuals with COVID-19 are not eligible for the treatment if they have been or are currently hospitalized or have received oxygen to assist with normal breathing.
Treatment using mAbs must be authorized and ordered by a doctor or medical provider in South Carolina.