— ORLANDO, Fla., April 22, 2021 – Monoclonal antibodies, available at AdventHealth outpatient clinics across Central Florida, have emerged as a key treatment to prevent many high-risk patients with COVID-19 from developing severe disease that requires hospitalization, said Dr. Michael Cacciatore, chief medical officer for AdventHealth Medical Group, at today’s AdventHealth Morning Briefing.
He said the hospital system is seeing at least a 50% reduction in admissions among people who receive the infusions of synthetic antibodies, which help stop the coronavirus from reproducing inside the body and causing worse symptoms.
At the same time, however, physicians are seeing younger unvaccinated patients admitted to the hospital, said Dr. Eduardo Oliveira, medical director of critical care services at AdventHealth Medical Group. About 430 people are hospitalized with COVID-19 across AdventHealth’s Central Florida hospitals, a slight increase from the prior week.
Patients as young as 23 have been recently hospitalized because of COVID-19, said Oliveira, who treats patients in the Intensive Care Unit. Most recent hospitalizations are people who have not received the vaccine, he said, a sign that the vaccine is working among the senior population who once dominated the group of patients sick enough to be admitted to the hospital.
Both doctors recommend people get the vaccine and continue good hygiene practices such as wearing masks, washing hands and social distancing.
Monoclonal antibody treatments are for those who have tested positive for COVID-19 and had mild-to-moderate symptoms within the last 10 days and are at high risk for progressing to a more severe case. To qualify, patients must be referred by a physician and must also have a high-risk factor such as diabetes, heart disease or obesity.
Community members with questions about monoclonal antibody treatments can call the AdventHealth Coronavirus Information Line at 877-VIRUS-HQ Call877-847-8747).
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