National Shortage of Monoclonal Antibody Sotrovimab Impacts Texans

statement on momoclonal antibody shortage

Monoclonal Antibody Shortage Halts Some Therapeutic Treatment

Remember last week when Ferris City Manager was sounding the alarm about monoclonal antibodies and the omicron wave crashing towards Texas? Well, he was right, the government was unprepared and the shortage is impacting Texans this week.

The problem: monoclonal antibodies that were effective in treating COVID-19 prior to Omicron aren’t effective against the new variant that is dominating COVID-19 cases across the country and our state.

Ferris City Manager said this last week, “How many times do we have to be caught flat-footed before we will realize that proper and prior planning prevents pitiful performance – performance in this instance being the availability of vaccines and or therapeutic treatments for people who are being told to get the vaccines, get the therapeutic treatments, but are left empty handed when it comes to where to get the treatment right now.”

Today, Texas Department of Health and Human Services issued this statement:

The federal government controls the distribution of monoclonal antibodies, and the regional infusion centers in Austin, El Paso, Fort Worth, San Antonio and The Woodlands have exhausted their supply of sotrovimab, the monoclonal antibody effective against the COVID-19 Omicron variant, due to the national shortage from the federal government.

They will not be able to offer it until federal authorities ship additional courses of sotrovimab to Texas in January. People who had appointments scheduled this week will be contacted directly and advised. Other monoclonal antibodies have not shown to be effective against the Omicron variant, which now accounts for more than 90 percent of new cases. The infusion centers will continue to offer those antibodies as prescribed by health care providers for people diagnosed with a non-Omicron case of COVID-19.

Two new oral antiviral drugs authorized last week by the Food and Drug Administration will be available soon, though they are expected to have a limited initial supply, and the federal government will also control their distribution.

People with COVID-19 infections at high risk of hospitalization and death should contact their health care provider to discuss treatment options. Everyone should protect themselves from severe COVID-19 by getting vaccinated as soon as possible, getting a booster as soon as they are eligible, and continuing to take precautions to prevent being exposed to the virus that causes COVID-19 and spreading it to others.

The timing of a shortage of therapeutic treatment’s is terrible with the exponential rise in positive COVID-19 cases which is only expected to get worse with holiday gatherings and travel. There’s also a shortage of at home test kits as people are scrambling to test before and after travel, before gathering with family, and before returning to work after holiday vacation.

New case reporting is being impacted by the holidays and the latest data on the DSHS dashboard is from 12/23/2021. However, on 12/22 DSHS was reporting cases have doubled and that trend is expected to continue.

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Kristin Barclay
Kristin Barclay graduated from the University of South Carolina with a major in Journalism and Advertising. Throughout her career, Kristin has demonstrated a passion for storytelling and a commitment to providing accurate, timely, and informative news coverage. She has a deep understanding of the issues and concerns facing local communities and has earned a reputation as a trusted source for reliable news and information. In addition to her work as an editor and journalist, Kristin is also a skilled writer and has written articles on a wide range of topics, including politics, business, education, and culture. She has a keen eye for detail and a talent for crafting compelling stories that engage and inform readers. Kristin is also an active member of the community and has volunteered her time and resources to numerous organizations and causes. She believes in the importance of giving back and making a positive impact on the world around us. In addition to her professional accomplishments, Kristin Barclay is also a passionate advocate for local journalism and the role it plays in keeping communities informed and engaged. She believes strongly in the importance of supporting local news outlets and is dedicated to ensuring that quality journalism remains a vital part of our society. Outside of work, Kristin enjoys traveling both for business and pleasure. She loves exploring new places, meeting new people, and experiencing different cultures. Whether she's on a business trip or a vacation, Kristin is always eager to discover what makes each place unique and special. Kristin's passions include boots, bourbon, dogs and college football. She is a self-proclaimed boot aficionado and has an impressive collection of cowboy boots that she wears with pride. She also enjoys sipping on a good bourbon and spending time with her husband and beloved border collies. Last but certainly not least, Kristin is the proud mother of two children who bring joy and meaning to her life. She is deeply committed to being a loving and supportive parent, and her children are her greatest source of inspiration and motivation