St. James Parish Hospital administering monoclonal antibody treatments

Published 12:00 am Saturday, August 21, 2021

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LUTCHER — St. James Parish Hospital is now administering Monoclonal Antibody IV Treatments for qualifying COVID-19 patients with a physician referral. These treatments can potentially reduce the likelihood of serious symptoms and/or hospitalization due to COVID-19. Patients must be within 10 days of symptoms or less.

Your body naturally makes antibodies to fight infections. Monoclonal Antibodies are created in a laboratory and given to patients directly through an infusion to help fight COVID-19. These treatments may help patients who are at high risk for severe illness avoid hospitalization and/or disease progression.

Monoclonal Antibody Treatments have been authorized by the FDA for patients who have tested positive for COVID-19 in the last 10 days, who are 12 years of age and older and who are at high risk for progressing to a severe case of COVID-19. Your healthcare provider can help you determine if you’re a candidate for treatment.

Monoclonal Antibody Treatments are different from COVID-19 vaccines. Vaccines provide active immunity by triggering the body’s natural immune response. Vaccines may require two doses and several weeks for the body to develop this immune response. If you have COVID-19, Monoclonal Antibody Treatments directly introduce the antibodies that the body needs to protect itself.

This treatment has been successful at St. James Parish Hospital. At this time, all patients receiving a Monoclonal Antibody Infusion at St. James Parish Hospital have been able to recover from COVID-19 at home.

The Process

COVID positive patients seen by hospital physicians and those treated in our ER and Urgent Care will be assessed to determine if they are a qualifying candidate that may benefit from a Monoclonal Antibody Treatment. Patients will be educated and included in the decision to receive the infusion. Patients opting for the treatment will sign a consent form.

St. James Urgent Care & Physician Clinic Patients

COVID-19 patients will be assessed to determine if they qualify and would benefit from a Monoclonal Antibody Infusion.

If the patient qualifies, the provider will educate the patient about the treatment.

Patients consenting to the treatment will be given instructions on what to expect the day of the infusion.

Hospital staff will work on insurance authorizations as needed and contact the patient to schedule the infusion.

Infusions will be administered to the right of the hospital (before you reach the ER). Parking is available and there will be a blue tent near the infusion entry door.

Emergency Room

If a patient presents to the ER with COVID-19, the ER Physician will determine if the patient would benefit from an antibody infusion.

If the patient qualifies, the provider will educate the patient and the infusion will be offered in the ER during the patient visit.

ER Patients who need to be admitted or require oxygen are not typically candidates for this particular treatment. A Monoclonal Antibody Treatment is intended to prevent a hospitalization and/or worsening of symptoms from the virus.

St. James Urgent Care is currently open from Monday-Friday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. and on Saturday and on Sunday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Walk-in, phone and virtual visits are offered. Patients experiencing COVID-like symptoms are encouraged to call ahead at 225-258-2040.