There is a relatively little-known but widely available treatment for COVID-19 that is safer, more effective, and already available to many individuals: monoclonal antibody therapy. This therapeutic is available at both private and government locations, and is always completely free at the latter. You and your family members should be aware of this treatment option, which can be life-saving and keep you out of the hospital.
Monoclonal antibody therapy is a COVID-19 treatment option available to certain Texans who either have the illness, or who are at an exceptionally high risk of becoming ill. It works by infusing COVID-19 antibodies into a patient’s bloodstream. These antibodies target the coronavirus spike protein, resulting in a hindrance of the virus’ ability to adhere to and infect cells, therefore boosting the immune system’s response to COVID-19 and slowing the infection.
Monoclonal antibody therapy requires a prescription, but if you do not have a regular healthcare provider, you may call 1-877-332-6585 to speak with the Combat COVID-19 Monoclonal Antibodies Call Center for further direction.
You qualify for monoclonal antibody therapy if:
- You have tested positive for COVID-19, and
- You have had mild to moderate symptoms of the disease for 10 days or less, and
- You are at high risk of becoming seriously ill. Criteria for being high risk can include being overweight, pregnant, diabetic, etc.
In addition, you must also be at least 12 years of age, and must weigh at least 88 pounds. You may also be able to qualify for monoclonal antibody treatment without a positive COVID-19 test if:
- You are not fully vaccinated or don’t have enough protection from the vaccine, and
- You have been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19.
According to testimony at a recent Texas Senate hearing, monoclonal antibodies are safe and highly effective.
An online map of infusion centers available to the public may be found at https://meds.tdem.texas.gov/. There are presently 24 state-sponsored infusion centers, and nearly 400 private locations. The treatment is completely free at state-sponsored locations. At the private locations, Medicare/Medicaid and some insurance policies will cover the cost.
The number for the Infusion Hotline is 1-800-742-5990. You may call this hotline to set up an appointment with a state center, or to ask about the option of having a mobile infusion team deployed to help.
For more information on monoclonal antibody therapy, visit https://www.dshs.texas.gov/coronavirus/therapeutics.aspx