Country Meadows Retirement Communities is proud to be among the first retirement communities to provide on-site monoclonal antibody treatments to residents who test positive for COVID-19.
This treatment— monoclonal Antibody infusion (mAb)—is available to most residents who have mild to moderate symptoms. Country Meadows’ Corporate Medical Director, Dr. John Hopkins, president and founder-CCS Healthcare, is overseeing the administration of the treatment. It is being provided by specially trained CCS Healthcare staff at the Country Meadows of West Shore (Mechanicsburg) campus as well as by trained Country Meadows’ co-workers at the Nursing Center located on the Country Meadows of Bethlehem campus. Currently these are the only two Country Meadows campuses offering the treatment.
Hopkins says the results he is seeing are encouraging. “We have provided the mAb treatment to approximately 100 residents with a 97% success rate, helping these individuals avoid trips to the hospital and minimizing serious complications, including mortality. Frankly, these outcomes are remarkable,” he says. “This treatment has not been made widely available to the general public due to the difficulty in setting up the infusion process. We are thrilled we can offer it to our residents to reduce the severity of the disease course.”
This treatment is available to residents who are within ten days of symptom onset, are experiencing mild symptoms and meet other specific criteria. Country Meadows is working with Hopkins’ staff to identify residents who may qualify for the treatment and is contacting those residents and families directly.
Country Meadows is accessing mAb treatments in two ways: through its partnership with Penn State Health and through its long-term care pharmacy, Diamond Pharmacy Services. Hopkins contracts with a team of outside nurses to administer the infusions and monitor residents. He adds, “I strongly encourage individuals who may qualify for the mAb treatment to receive the treatment as early as possible after symptom onset.”
Monoclonal antibodies have transformed the way we prevent and treat disease, from cancer and diseases of the immune system to childhood viral infections. They are based on natural antibodies, which are proteins the body produces to defend itself against disease, mimicking the human immune system. They are tailor-made to the illness they treat. Monoclonal antibodies have been referred to as “one of the few lifesaving treatments available for COVID-19.”
Country Meadows recognizes that monoclonal antibody therapy is not a cure for COVID-19 and is not a substitute for the vaccine. Vaccination clinics are being held at every Country Meadows campus for residents and co-workers to get vaccinated. However, for those residents who test positive in the interim, they now have access to this “remarkable” infusion therapy.