COVID cases rise in Brevard County as monoclonal treatments suspended

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A much-touted weapon in the COVID-19 fighting arsenal that was heavily promoted by Gov. Ron DeSantis and many health officials might now be out of commission because of omicron: monoclonal antibody treatments.

The FDA and ASPR released a joint statement Thursday that monoclonal antibody treatments might not be an effective treatment against the highly-contagious omicron variant of the novel coronavirus. In the face of the news, health officials now are increasingly urging residents to vaccinate as omicron spreads.

In a statement released Dec. 23, the FDA announced that “data show that it is unlikely that bamlanivimab and etesevimab administered together or REGEN-COV will retain activity against this variant.”

As a result, the statement added, the assistant secretary for preparedness and response at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services decided to suspend its distribution of the antibody treatment REGEN-COV and the combination treatment of bamlanivimab and etesevimab.