COVID-19 virus photo

by Robin Kemp

Clayton County saw a slight drop in COVID-19 across all age groups except one for the week ending Feb. 13, 2022, according to the latest figures from the Clayton County Health District.

During the same time, some of Clayton County’s youngest residents began getting vaccinated.

Eight people died. All were unvaccinated.

Slightly more than 2 of 3 people in Clayton County (226 of 342 or 66.08%) who tested positive for COVID-19 were unvaccinated.

Among those who were fully vaccinated and boosted, 27 tested positive for COVID-19, with three of those people (11.11%) sick enough to be hospitalized.

No one who was fully vaccinated and boosted was hospitalized for COVID-19.

If you have concerns about the safety or effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccine, consult your primary care physician about your individual situation. If you don’t have a doctor, you can call the Clayton County Health District at (678) 479-2223.

On Monday, the federal Food and Drug Administration issued an emergency use authorization–which is not an approval–for a monoclonal antibody treatment, but only for a very narrow segment of cases of the COVID-19 omicron variant.

Last month, the FDA revoked the use of two other monoclonal antibody treatments because they were not effective against the omicron variant.

The new EUA is for bebtelovimab, but only when all the following conditions apply and only when the benefits of treatment outweigh the risks:

  • the patient has a mild to moderate case of COVID-19
  • patient is 12 years and older
  • a pediatric patient must weigh at least 40 kilograms (about 88 pounds)
  • the patient tested positive for COVID-19
  • the patient is at high risk of severe COVID-19 progression, including hospitalization or death
  • other FDA-approved COVID-19 treatment options are “not accessible or clinically appropriate” for the patient

Patients who are already hospitalized for COVID-19 or who require oxygen therapy due to COVID-19 cannot get the treatment. That’s because no studies have been done on patients hospitalized with COVID-19 and because monoclonal antibodies “may be associated with worse clinical outcomes” for hospitalized patients on high-flow oxygen or mechanical ventilators.

The FDA decides whether to issue an EUA based on all available scientific evidence and a comparison of risks versus benefits, both known and possible. The criteria for giving a patient an EUA treatment depends on whether, in that patient’s case, the benefits outweigh the risks.

In other words, bebtelovimab is not a substitute for vaccination in general and is not approved for general use.

Eli Lilly and Company manufactures bebtelovimab, which works by attaching itself to the spikes on the virus. That prevents it from plugging into and destroying healthy cells.

Learn how COVID-19 spikes work in this Nature article on the Delta variant.

 

 

 

Robin Kemp

Robin Kemp is executive editor and CEO of The Clayton Crescent, which she founded in 2020. She has worked for Gambit, CNN, The Weather Channel, Clayton News, Henry Herald, and numerous freelance outlets....

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