NEW YORK (COVID Plasma Initiative) –
Tuesday, December 1, 2020 at 10:54 pm | ט”ו כסלו תשפ”א
Image of an antibody binding to the surface of a virus, blocking entry into a human cell. (Lisa Donohue, CoVPN/NIH)
Covid Plasma Initiative’s lifesaving efforts have expanded to include the facilitation of a newly available, potentially life-saving treatment. Referred to as monoclonal antibodies, it is an infusion of lab manufactured, concentrated antibodies, similar to those in convalescent plasma. This is the same treatment given to President Trump; and now, as of last week, it is available to the public.
Dr. Yosef Levenbrown is a Pediatric Critical Care Medicine Specialist at Dupont Hospital and the Medical Director of CPI (Advisory Board). He explains that the data from this double-blind randomized control trial indicates that monoclonal antibodies can, potentially, reduce hospitalization significantly and decrease symptom severity. Dr. Jeffrey Bander of Mt. Sinai Hospital states, “We’ve seen great efficacy with these drugs. As the sole outpatient treatment, monoclonal antibodies have the potential to prevent an otherwise at-risk patient from being hospitalized and keep beds available for the critically ill.”
“It’s a miracle drug,” shares Mr. Yehudah Serle, who recently tested positive for Covid-19 and received monoclonal antibodies. “One day I wasn’t feeling good. I got the treatment and the next day, b’chasdei Hashem, I was feeling much better.”
Monoclonal antibody treatment can be accessed by anyone who tests positive (via PCR test, NOT rapid) and is considered ‘at risk’. A person is defined as ‘at risk’ if they have one of the following factors: diabetes, obesity, immunosuppressed, over 65, and over 55 with hypertension. Other factors may qualify as well.
The FDA advises that monoclonal antibody treatment start as soon as possible after a positive test, preferably within 24 hours and no later than 10 days after symptom onset. It is therefore imperative to take a COVID-19 test right away if you have symptoms or were exposed. Contact your doctor immediately to discuss whether this treatment is appropriate for you and if so, to arrange access.
Hospitals providing monoclonal antibodies include: Mt. Sinai (NYC), Maimonides (Brooklyn), Northwell (LI and SI), Good Samaritan (Rockland), Monmouth Medical Center Southern Campus (NJ). (Please note that not all hospitals on this list are similarly recommended for COVID-19 inpatient care).
COVID-19 can cause “silent hypoxia”, an undetected drop in oxygen levels. A pulse oximeter is simple to use and identifies low oxygen levels before they become dangerous. Consult with a medical professional if levels drop below 95.
If you need to be hospitalized do not ‘wait and see’. Choose a hospital with up-to-date treatments: plasma, steroids, blood thinners etc.