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Memorial Utilizes New Treatment for High Risk Covid-19 Patients

Lake Charles Memorial’s Outpatient Infusion Services has begun administering Bamlinivimab for Covid-19 patients with high risk factors in an effort to keep them from becoming critical and/or being hospitalized. About 50% of hospitals nationwide have implemented the infusion process.

“Monoclonal antibody and convalescent plasma infusions have been very effective,” says Gerald Bryant, RN, MSN, PhD, Chief Nursing Officer & Chief Operating Officer for Memorial. “The fact that Memorial is able to have this infusion service up and running quickly, is a testament to our tireless nursing staff and their commitment to fighting this pandemic with everything they’ve got.”

To keep hospitals from reaching critical capacity of patients with COVID-19, new treatments that can treat people more aggressively are being utilized. One particular monoclonal antibody, Bamlanivimab, being administered at Memorial, was approved on November 9th, 2020 by the FDA for emergency use in the treatment of a specific group of patients with COVID-19. Targeting this population before they worsen and would require hospitalization is the goal.

“To date we have done over 500 infusions and we anticipate increased demand,” says Manley Jordan, MD, Chief Medical Officer and interim co- Chief Executive Officer for Memorial. “It’s only used for very specific patients at risk of getting worse due to pre-existing co-morbidities, but who don’t meet criteria for needing hospitalization.”

Bamlanivimab blocks the spike protein on the Covid-19 virus, which prevents it from binding to the ACE-2 receptor in human cells. These receptors are scattered throughout the body, including the lungs, heart, bladder, pancreas, testis, kidney, nose, eye and brain. This receptor has been a prime target for treatment development since it was first identified as playing a pivotal role in viral entry into the cell.

If you are in a high risk category and have Covid-19, please call 337-494-2273 for more information on this outpatient only treatment. A physician referral is required.