Gain a deeper understanding of these therapies for COVID-19 and review the symptoms and high-risk factors necessary to be a candidate for treatment, and the process for receiving the medication.
Talk to your doctor
If you have tested positive for COVID-19, have been experiencing symptoms for less than seven 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?
Brooks-TLC has supplies of two monoclonal antibody therapies that 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.
The two monoclonal antibody therapies are called:
- Casirivimab and Imdevimab
Both are medications still being studied, but the FDA has authorized the emergency use of both medications 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 seven days or less. Patients receive treatment at dedicated locations or at home.
- 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
- 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.
Monoclonal antibody 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 comorbidity, and require an increase in baseline oxygen flow rate due to COVID-19.
The monoclonal antibody treatment process
- Submitted physician referrals are reviewed by a special multidisciplinary committee at Brooks-TLC.
- If your patient is approved for therapy, we will contact them to schedule an appointment at one of our dedicated treatment locations, or in their home. We try to contact patients within 24 hours, but it may take longer over the weekend.
- Monoclonal antibody treatment is an infusion therapy, delivered intravenously in one dose, over one hour. The overall infusion process takes three to four hours, which includes setup, infusion, and observation after treatment.
- Visitors are not permitted. Patients are welcome to bring a book or reading material.
Cost for the treatment and infusion
Brooks-TLC is providing COVID-19 infusion treatments for no cost to our community. We will not bill you for any balance, deductible, copay or coinsurance. However, be aware that if you have insurance, Brooks-TLC will bill your insurance provider for the cost to administer the infusion. If you do not have insurance, the government will cover the cost to administer the infusion via the CARES Act.
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends that vaccination for COVID-19 should be deferred for at least 90 days after a patient is treated with monoclonal antibodies to avoid interference of the treatment with vaccine-induced immune responses.
If a patient has received the COVID-19 vaccine, that should not impact the decision to recommend treatment with monoclonal antibodies. If a patient has only had one vaccine dose and chooses to get monoclonal antibodies, the second vaccine dose should be administered 90 days post-infusion. The patient does not have to restart the vaccine series.
Monoclonal antibody infusion is administered at:
Brooks-TLC Hospital System, Inc., 529 Central Avenue, Dunkirk, NY 14048