RIVIERA BEACH, Fla. — The city of Riviera Beach fire rescue rolled out monoclonal antibody treatment for its residents Thursday. It is an effort to help reduce COVID hospitalizations. Residents who are possibly experiencing COVID symptoms may receive the treatment.
“For us being able to be that buffer between the hospital and the community, we can treat our citizens who are exhibiting those possible signs and symptoms of COVID-19,” said Dawayne Watson, Master Public Information Officer, City of Riviera Beach. “We can treat them in their house so that they won’t have to leave, and that way we can free up those hospital rooms, beds, and personnel for those who are more critically in need of external treatment.”
According to medical experts, Regeneron is given through a transfusion and can help the recently infected who have not developed severe symptoms, reducing the risk of hospitalization or death by up to 85 percent.
Patients are first evaluated before giving consent to the therapy. Eric Gitler, EMS captain usually administers it.
“Roll out to the scene at a certain time, bring the patient out to the truck, start an IV infusion, which is we are giving them 1200 mg of Regeneron. We put it in a 100cc bag, and it dripped for over 20 to 30 minutes,” said Gitler. “Once that goes in, we monitor the vital signs and assess them for 15 to 30 minutes for the next hour. Once that’s done, they sign a consent form release form, and they are on their way.”
Gitler said they do a follow-up with patients within the next two days. The city said this truck is independent from any other active 911 calls.