Increased demand and a limited supply of COVID-19 treatment has led to a change in how the treatment will be delivered.
This is called “monoclonal antibody therapy”. This can prevent people who contract COVID from reducing hospital stays or allowing them to stay out of hospital completely.
And instead of health care providers ordering it directly, the North Dakota Department of Health will order the courses of treatment.
“We will be in touch with providers, based on their requests,” said Tim Wiedrich, head of health resources and response at the Department of Health. “The federal government will determine the quantities that will be allocated, based on utilization rates.
The first order was to go out on Friday.
“There were approximately 1,600 courses that were pending applications from North Dakota health facilities,” Wiedrich said. “Now that we have the award process, we anticipate that 380 courses will be delivered.”
Wiedrcih says the health ministry is collecting information on the amount of treatment courses physically available to the state.
“But it is reasonable to expect that we will have a request that will exceed the amount that is allocated.”
Wiedrcih said it’s important for people to remember that the best protection against serious illness, hospitalization and death from COVID-19 is still the vaccination process.