Health

Biden’s team strengthens grip on state use of Covid antibody therapy

President Joe Biden has sharply criticized Desantis and others for encouraging masks and resisting efforts to strengthen vaccinations. Don’t get in the way. “

Still, until recently, the government shipped antibody medications to the state as needed. In early August, the best health authorities urged those fighting the Delta surge to seek more supplies.

However, with the explosive growth in demand from a few southern states since then, state and federal officials have raised concerns that they are consuming a disproportionate amount of national supply. Seven states, Texas, Florida, Mississippi, Tennessee, Georgia, Louisiana, and Alabama, accounted for 70% of all orders in early September.

The imbalance prompted efforts to curb supply controls because of concerns that the government did not have enough hands to cope with the Covid-19 surge elsewhere in the country.

Earlier this month HHS officials told the state They would scrutinize more closely how much treatment was actually used, but the department did not intend to curb the state’s supply.

“The answer is no. We haven’t returned to the assignment process,” said John Red, chief medical officer of the HHS Emergency Response and Response Office at the time.

It changed just a few days later, when the department said it was actually planning to regain control of where the dose was assigned, based on case level and antibody drug usage. I did.

“HHS determines the amount of products each state and territory receives each week,” said an HHS spokeswoman. “The state and territory health departments then identify the site and the amount to receive the product.”

The decision has sparked criticism from the Alabama Medical Association and warned that it would limit access to hospital treatments that are already working to increase the number of Covid-19 patients.

In Tennessee, Health Department spokesperson Sarah Tanksley told POLITICO that additional scrutiny of state orders has already delayed access to healthcare providers.

Still, government officials have been complaining that southern states have relied on expensive treatments paid by the federal government for the past few weeks.

Drug-dependent states, such as Tennessee and Alabama, are also one of the states with the lowest levels of vaccination against Covid-19.

Regarding the growing demand for monoclonal antibody drugs, Marcus Precia, Chief Medical Officer of the State and Territory Health Officials Association, said: “And where other mitigation efforts have failed.”

The new HHS policy represents a return to the early days of pandemic response, where the state had few other options to fight Covid-19 and was in high demand for treatments that helped keep people away from hospitals.

As the Covid-19 vaccine was rolled out nationwide and the number of cases decreased, the demand for monoclonal antibody drugs decreased, giving the government more freedom to vaccinate as needed.

However, as Delta boosted the resurgence throughout the southeast, Republican governors adopted treatment as an alternative to imposing public health restrictions. In Texas, Governor Greg Abbott has opened a series of antibody infusion centers, despite calling for a ban on mask requirements in schools.

DeSantis also downplayed the threat of the virus, criticizing the Biden administration’s support for vaccine obligations and school mask obligations, and touted efforts to make treatment widely available.

“The Floridians who are receiving this treatment are those who need it,” said Christina Pushau, a spokesman for Desantis. “We are proud of this development, and we are proud that Governor DeSantis has taken the lead and made the treatment known throughout the country.”

In the face of that growing demand, the Biden administration has also scrambled to accelerate drug production. Already, the government has increased overall weekly shipments from 100,000 to 150,000.

Still, expanding the treatment pipeline can take weeks, and state officials say they expect the new restrictions to apply until at least October.

“Until a few weeks ago, no one actually used a monoclonal antibody. After that, there was a surge in this use,” Precia said. “Now there is a clear shortage.”

Biden’s team strengthens grip on state use of Covid antibody therapy

Source link Biden’s team strengthens grip on state use of Covid antibody therapy

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