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COVID-19 Monoclonal Antibody Therapy

Presbyterian is offering monoclonal antibody therapy for the treatment of COVID-19 in non-hospitalized patients who have mild to moderate COVID-19 symptoms, and who are at high risk of progressing to severe symptoms and/or hospitalization. Monoclonal antibody therapies are available under FDA Emergency Use Authorization.

Have you been diagnosed with COVID-19 in the past week?

Find out if you may qualify for this treatment by completing this questionnaire.

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Frequently Asked Questions


General Information

What is monoclonal antibody therapy?

This treatment is an infusion of monoclonal antibodies, which are man-made antibodies that mimic the natural immune system’s ability to fight viruses. The medication works by blocking the virus from attaching to human cells and stopping it from causing further infection.

What are the benefits of the treatment?

Clinical trials for monoclonal antibody therapy have shown that patients who receive the treatment are about 70% less likely to be hospitalized or go to the emergency room. There is also a decrease in the amount of virus in an infected person’s blood which may help improve current symptoms. Studies are still ongoing.

Which treatments are offered?

Presbyterian offers monoclonal antibody therapies that have been granted an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the infusion center will provide the therapy they have available. We are continually monitoring which COVID-19 variants are in the community, and sometimes make changes to which therapy is offered to ensure the most effective treatment.

Are these treatments FDA approved?

No, these treatments are still considered investigational and were granted an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) by the FDA. When issuing an EUA, the FDA evaluates the available scientific evidence and carefully balances any known or potential risks with any known or potential benefits for use during an emergency. Based on the FDA’s review, it granted an EUA for these monoclonal antibody therapies because they are believed to benefit certain patients. There are no other approved treatments for patients who qualify.

How is the therapy given?

It is administered in a vein by intravenous (IV) infusion. It is given in an infusion center where health care providers have immediate access to medications to treat any reactions and where emergency services are available, if needed.

How long will the treatment take?

The intravenous infusion takes about 30 minutes. The entire appointment takes about 2-3 hours.

Where is this treatment offered?

Within Presbyterian, the treatment is offered at seven locations throughout the state, including Albuquerque, Santa Fe, Española, Socorro, Clovis, Ruidoso, and Tucumcari.

Eligibility

Who is eligible for this treatment?

To be eligible for this treatment, patients must:

  • Have had a positive COVID-19 test (SARS-CoV-2 viral test PCR or antigen)
  • Have had mild to moderate symptoms for less than 10 days
  • Be 12 years of age or older
  • Weigh at least 88lbs (40kg)
  • Be at high risk for progressing to severe COVID-19 and/or hospitalization due to one (or more of the following:
    • Body mass index (BMI) ≥35
    • Chronic kidney disease
    • Diabetes
    • Immunosuppressive disease
    • Currently receiving immunosuppressive treatment
    • ≥65 years of age
    • ≥55 years of age AND have at least one of the following:
      • Cardiovascular disease
      • Hypertension
      • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease/other chronic respiratory disease.
    • 12 – 17 years of age AND have at least one of the following:
      • BMI ≥85th percentile for their age and gender based on CDC growth charts
      • Sickle cell disease
      • Congenital or acquired heart disease
      • Neurodevelopmental disorders, for example, cerebral palsy
      • A medical-related technological dependence, for example, tracheostomy, gastrostomy, or positive pressure ventilation (not related to COVID-19)
      • Asthma, reactive airway or other chronic respiratory disease that requires daily medication for control.

Do I need a provider referral for this treatment?

While Presbyterian prefers a provider referral, we understand the need to be treated as soon as possible. For this reason, a Presbyterian infusion provider will work with patients who qualify to make sure they are treated in a timely fashion.

Do I need to be an existing Presbyterian patient to receive this treatment?

No, Presbyterian is accepting all COVID-19 patients in need of treatment. Please be aware there may be costs associated with the treatment depending on your insurance.

Is there any reason I won't be able to receive this treatment?

You will not be eligible for this treatment if you:

  • do not have COVID-19 symptoms
  • have had symptoms for more than 10 days
  • were previously hospitalized due to COVID-19
  • require oxygen therapy due to COVID-19
  • require an increase in baseline oxygen flow rate due to COVID-19 in those on chronic oxygen therapy due to underlying non-COVID-19 related co-morbidity

For Referring Providers

How do I refer a patient for this therapy?

Any New Mexico physician or advanced practice clinician can refer a patient for monoclonal antibody therapy.

Once you have determined your patient is eligible for treatment:

  • Download, print, and complete this two-page referral form
    Provider Referral
  • Fax the referral form and other required documents, to Presbyterian Infusion Services at 505-355-7158.
  • Other required documents include:
    • Fax coversheet from referring provider’s primary practice
    • Patient demographics (patient name, DOB, address, insurance, primary language)
    • Copy of most recent clinical encounter (e.g. history and physical, progress note, telephone note, video appointment note)
    • Copy of positive COVID-19 test result. Test result may be sent from provider’s office or patient may present hard copy, text, or email verification at time of appointment.
      PLEASE NOTE: Treatment will not be provided unless positive COVID-19 test result is confirmed. If you have questions regarding eligibility of your patient, please call 505-291-2626.

Which patients are eligible for this therapy?

To be eligible for this treatment, patients must:

  • Have had a positive COVID-19 test (SARS-CoV-2 viral test PCR or antigen)
  • Have had mild to moderate symptoms for less than 10 days
  • Be 12 years of age or older
  • Weigh at least 88lbs (40kg)
  • Be at high risk for progressing to severe COVID-19 and/or hospitalization due to one (or more of the following:
    • Body mass index (BMI) ≥35
    • Chronic kidney disease
    • Diabetes
    • Immunosuppressive disease
    • Currently receiving immunosuppressive treatment
    • ≥65 years of age
    • ≥55 years of age AND have at least one of the following:
      • Cardiovascular disease
      • Hypertension
      • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease/other chronic respiratory disease.
    • 12 – 17 years of age AND have at least one of the following:
      • BMI ≥85th percentile for their age and gender based on CDC growth charts
      • Sickle cell disease
      • Congenital or acquired heart disease
      • Neurodevelopmental disorders, for example, cerebral palsy
      • A medical-related technological dependence, for example, tracheostomy, gastrostomy, or positive pressure ventilation (not related to COVID-19)
      • Asthma, reactive airway or other chronic respiratory disease that requires daily medication for control.

Which patients are NOT eligible for this therapy?

Patients are not eligible if they:

  • were previously hospitalized due to COVID-19.
  • require oxygen therapy due to COVID-19.
  • require an increase in baseline oxygen flow rate due to COVID-19 in those on chronic oxygen therapy due to underlying non-COVID-19 related co-morbidity.