DOTHAN, Ala. (WDHN) — This week the state of Alabama received 5,000 monoclonal antibody doses, which has decreased from the previous week where the state received 6,000 doses.
According to Dr. Karen Landers, with the Alabama Department of Public Health, this number has to with fewer hospitalizations across the state.
Landers said as of Friday, 50% of the state of Alabama has at least received the first dose of the COVID vaccine and that percentage is rising, which is causing lower hospitalization rates. She said another factor that has been helpful in keeping people out of hospital beds is the use of monoclonal antibodies.
“My message to people is while monoclonal antibodies are a great product,” Dr. Landers said. “We really want people to get it who are qualified and need it. Try to do all you can to prevent yourself from getting COVID, by practicing mitigation and getting vaccinated because our vaccine breakthrough in Alabama is very low.”
Dr. Landers said Monoclonal antibodies are man-made antibodies that are authorized for emergency authorization. She said patients that receive monoclonal antibody treatment have a reduced chance of going to the hospital, but she says that not everyone qualifies for this treatment.
“When we look at monoclonal antibodies as a therapeutic regiment,” Dr. Landers said. “We have to first remember that not everybody qualifies for monoclonal antibodies for treatment.”
She said, as far as distribution of the monoclonal treatment, Alabama has to compete with the rest of the U.S. The doses distributed are based on the number of hospitalizations and COVID cases that have been reported over the past seven days.
Dr. Landers tells WDHN the number of monoclonal antibodies Alabama receives is based on that data.
“Again we want people to have the therapeutic if they need it, but we also recognize that just like with other products, there is not necessarily enough to go around to everyone,” Dr. Landers said. “Although I think we stretched us pretty well in the state of Alabama so far.”
Dr. Landers also wants to remind the community that the state of Alabama still sits at a 12% positivity rate even though the numbers have come down, residents still need to do everything to best protect themselves.