Federal Health Officials Plead For Wider Usage Of Monoclonal Antibodies
HHS and Operation Warp Speed officials are trying to increase the public's awareness of the covid treatment option, which are in good supply but work best when administered to patients in the early days of illness.
US Officials Urge Americans To Ask Their Doctors About Monoclonal Antibodies For COVID. But Is It Too Little, Too Late?
Federal officials say monoclonal antibodies are in full supply, but patients and providers are not taking advantage of them to treat COVID-19. In a briefing Thursday, the Department of Health and Human Services and Operation Warp Speed urged Americans to ask their doctors about the treatment to prevent severe illness and help ease the crushing burden of the pandemic on hospitals. “We now have all the tools we need to both prevent and fight back against COVID-19,” said U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Jerome Adams. “But tools that never leave the toolbox don’t get the work done.” (Rodriguez, 1/14)
U.S. Health Officials Push Hospitals To Administer Unused Covid Antibody Drugs
The U.S. has shipped over half a million doses of antibody treatments that have the potential to keep high-risk Covid patients out of hospitals if given early enough in their infection. This would help already overburdened hospitals avoid additional strain, but the drugs are still being underutilized despite their promising results, Trump administration health officials said Thursday. That’s because many patients don’t know how to access them, and hospitals aren’t prescribing the medications or arranging the infusion sites necessary to administer the drugs, they said. (Higgins-Dunn, 1/15)
Monoclonal Antibodies Could Ease Record Covid Hospitalizations. Why Are They Going Unused?
So why aren't people getting it? Simply put, a lack of time, resources and awareness. Monoclonal antibodies must be given soon after a person has tested positive. "These medications work best when given early," Surgeon General Jerome Adams said during Thursday's briefing. (Edwards, 1/15)
In other health care industry news —
Streamlining The Process Of Prior Authorization For Medical And Surgical Procedures
Sens. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) and John Thune (R-S.D.) have done a great service to their constituents and to their nation by introducing the Improving Seniors’ Timely Access to Care Act. This is the much anticipated Senate companion to H.R. 3107 the Protecting Seniors Timely Access to Care Act. It should be a pivotal stepping stone for health care reform in the new administration. (Richard Menger, 1/14)
Pandemic Spurs Technology Growth In Insurance Industry
Insurers increased their use of catastrophe models, drones and mobile apps during the COVID-19 pandemic, and they anticipate growth in such technology to continue once the health crisis passes. Some growth in what is known as "insurtech" was driven by the social distancing measures and quarantines that accompanied the pandemic, while adoption of other technologies came despite it. (Sagalow, 1/14)