(Headline USA) Missouri is opening antibody treatment centers in several counties in the hopes that they’ll keep some high-risk patients with COVID-19 from dying or becoming critically ill.
Monoclonal antibody infusion treatment will be available for 30 days at sites in Jackson, Pettis, Scott, Butler and Jefferson counties. Two more sites will be added later in the St. Louis area. The state is spending $15 million on the centers and believes they could treat up to 4,000 people over the next month.
The centers will use several therapies that have become the linchpin of debate as many on the Left attempt to demand vaccinations are the only reliable treatment. Opponents and vaccine skeptics point to scientific studies showing that the readily available therapies have proven to be highly effective in treating people, abnegating the need for vaccines.
However, even the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have approached them with derision, recently claiming that the drugs were intended for animals and not people, while insisting that people use the experimental shots that it has been deeply invested in both financially and otherwise since their development during the Trump administration.
The initial site was set up last month in southwestern Missouri, a region hit hard by the delta variant surge. Health officials said 588 people have been treated at an infusion center in Springfield. Katie Towns, the health director for Springfield and Greene County, said in a news release that the treatment “has undoubtedly saved lives in our community.”
The drugs are lab-made versions of virus-blocking antibodies that help fight off infections. Antibody treatments are among the few therapies that can lessen the effects of COVID-19, and they are seen as an option for those with mild-to-moderate cases who aren’t yet in hospitals.
On Thursday, the state’s COVID-19 dashboard showed that hospitalizations rose by 84, to 2,352. The state cited 2,161 newly confirmed cases, bringing its pandemic total to 622,081. The state also has reported 10,409 COVID-19 deaths since the onset of the pandemic.
Adapted from reporting by the Associated Press