LOUISVILLE, Ky. — The antibody infusion treatment called Bamlanivimab is essentially a monoclonal antibody that targets the spikes around the coronavirus that are proteins. It's a treatment that cancer survivor Jerry Hardin said he didn't have to think twice about.
"I never questioned it, I said yeah I'd be more than happy to do it. I didn't know how bad it was going to get," Hardin said.
The Fisherville, Kentucky man is no stranger to surviving illnesses. He's battled cancer and in December of last year, it was COVID-19.
"I was extremely worn out, I mean had no energy whatsoever," remembers Hardin.
A week into the virus, his doctor called about an experimental treatment with emergency use authorization from the FDA.
"Being what I've been through, I'll take that chance, and it was well worth it," said Hardin.
UofL Health had started using Bamlanivimab in November of last year.
The entire process took about three hours at UofL in Shelbyville. The infusion takes one hour.
"At least so far it's working because we're not seeing those people hospitalized," Dr. Val Breonnes-Pryor says this treatment is for outpatient care and given to those when first diagnosed with Covid.
"If you give it early enough, you can prevent progression of symptoms and we can prevent hospitalizations," said Dr. Val.
UofL qualifications for taking Bamlanivimab treatment:
- 65 and over
- 55 and over with comorbidities
- BMI over 35
- Cardiovascular disease
From there, Dr. Val said all you need to do is ask your primary care provider,
"within 24-48 hours. So that is how quickly we can get this infusion to folks."
Dr. Val said even if you don't think you qualify, it's worth asking your doctor about it. It's a treatment Hardin said he's telling all of his neighbors about should they find themselves with a positive test, "For the most part, my body felt like a new person."
This is an experimental outpatient treatment, there are different treatments if you're hospitalized. If you are interested in asking your doctor, they'll know what you mean if you call it the 'Bam Antibody Treatment.'