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December 3, 2020 -- CVS Health will administer a coronavirus antibody treatment to patients in their homes and long-term care facilities under a federal pilot project announced Wednesday.

Eli Lilly developed the treatment -- bamlanivimab -- and the FDA granted emergency use authorization in October. Until now, it’s only been administered in hospitals and other health care facilities.

COVID-19 patients who are at risk of severe infection or complications will be selected to receive the treatment, CVS said in a news release.

The aim of the program is to “help keep patients out of inpatient and hospital settings altogether, alleviating pressure on the health care system and preserving important hospital resources for the most critical patients,” CVS said.

The treatment targets the spike protein on the coronavirus and is meant to block the virus from attaching to and entering human cells.

Coram, the infusion care business of CVS Health, will start by administering 1,000 doses of the drug in Boston, Chicago, Cleveland, Los Angeles, Milwaukee, Minneapolis, and Tampa. As supplies of the drug increase, Coram will move into areas of need, the news release said.

“Our Coram model allows us to meet patients where they are during the pandemic by delivering safe, clinically appropriate home-based care, and we stand ready to deploy our teams when and where the need is greatest as supply of these new monoclonal antibody treatments ramp up over the coming year,” said Sree Chaguturu, M.D., chief medical officer for CVS Caremark and senior vice president of CVS Health.

The agreement with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services was announced Wednesday.

Show Sources

CVS. "CVS Health selected by U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, as part of a pilot, to administer recently authorized COVID-19 therapy to eligible patients in long-term care facilities and at home"

WebMD. “FDA Gives Eli Lilly COVID Antibody Drug Emergency OK”

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