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BERLIN, Md. – Atlantic General Hospital is seeking referrals of high risk patients with mild to moderate COVID-19 infection for the monoclonal antibody therapy bamlanivimab.

Bamlanivimab is an infusion therapy granted emergency use authorization by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for treatment of individuals with COVID-19 before severe symptoms occur, to reduce the chances of the infection worsening and requiring hospitalization.

It has proven to be an effective treatment for patients who have been experiencing mild to moderate symptoms of a COVID-19 infection for less than 10 days.

Treatment is offered for adults and children ages 12 and older at greatest risk of progressing to severe COVID-19, based upon specific criteria established by the FDA.

These criteria include being over the age of 65, having an underlying chronic condition like diabetes or severe obesity, and/or having a compromised immune system. The comprehensive FDA criteria can be found here.

James McGinnis, who serves as director of pharmacy at Atlantic General Hospital and also oversees the medical infusion center, urges individuals to contact their primary care provider immediately after a positive COVID-19 test.

“Bamlanivimab should be administered as soon as possible, as it is most beneficial when given early in symptom progression,” said McGinnis.

The therapeutic is administered via a single intravenous infusion and mimics immune system antibodies that block viruses.

Not all individuals who test positive for COVID-19 are recommended to receive bamlanivimab. Bamlanivimab infusion is provided through physician referral only, after it is determined that a patient is a good candidate and at high risk of severe onset.

Individuals with COVID-19 symptoms should contact their primary care provider or visit the Atlantic ImmediCare clinic in Ocean City for testing and referral.

Atlantic General Hospital became one of the first six treatment sites within the state of Maryland to offer the monoclonal antibody therapeutic last fall.