It’s time to take action to support rapid implementation of COVID-19 monoclonal antibody (mAb) treatment in post-acute and long-term care facilities, a group of industry geriatricians contend.
They’ve compiled a table of information-rich resources for peers who have not yet come on board.
While some long-term care clinicians are scrambling to access the suddenly scarce drugs, others need to quickly add them to the treatment toolbox to protect vulnerable residents, according to the doctors, from a spectrum of eldercare services across Colorado.
“Of great concern is that effective immunity to COVID-19 by mRNA vaccination among nursing home residents has declined significantly since emergence of the delta variant,” wrote Leslie Beth Eber, M.D., of Rocky Mountain Senior Care, Golden, CO, and colleagues in a letter to the editor published in JAMDA on Monday, Nov. 1.
Many clinicians remain unfamiliar with mAbs
Despite the proven usefulness of mAbs in protecting residents from poor COVID-19 outcomes and the potential they offer for preventing risky hospital transfers, many LTC clinicians remain unfamiliar with mAbs clinical protocols or unprepared to place orders, they reported.
What’s more, a recent switch to state and territory-controlled mAbs distribution has increased barriers to access just when the drugs may be needed most, they added.
“MAb awareness, access, and administration remain significant challenges in post-acute and long-term care (PALTC) facilities. We provide tools and strategies to address these challenges,” they said.
Their published table of peer resources includes links to the following, among other information:
- The Food and Drug Administration’s treatment authorizations for intravenous or subcutaneous delivery methods
- Nursing staff protocols to help identify appropriate candidates for mAb therapy
- Treatment protocols tailored to PALTC settings, in coordination with long-term care pharmacies
- Public health guidance
- PALTC provider education
- Toolkits for intravenous or subcutaneous delivery routes
- Monitoring algorithms for tracking adverse effects
The authors represent the University of Colorado School of Medicine; Rocky Mountain Senior Care, Golden, CO; and the Veterans Health Administration, Eastern Colorado Health Care System.
Eber is a board member of AMDA — The Society for Post-Acute and Long-Term Care Medicine, and the organization’s 2021 Medical Director of the Year.
The LTC doctors’ letter and table of resources can be found here.