Huntsville clinic offers crucial COVID-19 antibody infusion

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. — Synergy Wellness Clinic said it is among the first non-hospital clinics in Alabama to be certified to administer Bamlanivimab, the monoclonal antibody infusion drug emergency-approved by the Food and Drug Administration to treat some victims of coronavirus.

Clinic co-founder Steven Werdehoff touts the lab-created drug as essential for those who qualify within ten days of testing positive for COVID-19. “The monoclonal antibody from ELI has become available and studies have shown that it can reduce hospitalization by two-thirds, so it’s effective in decreasing the severity and the length of illness for COVID,” Werdehoff said. “And so we’re trying to get the word out that these infusions are available.”

He said he hopes to alleviate the demand at hospitals in the Tennessee Valley with this service, even partnering with Huntsville Hospital to send overflow patients to the clinic. He said it’s the first non-hospital affiliated clinic in Alabama to be approved to administer the antibody infusions, in early January.

The infusion itself takes about an hour, doctors said, for transferring the drug into the forearm of patients through an IV.

Like most coronavirus-related care it is free of charge to the patient themselves, covered by insurances.

COVID-19 patient Mark Phillips said Huntsville Hospital suggested to go to the clinic for treatment, and he wanted to take it as soon as he learned that he qualified. “I didn’t know it was available,” Phillips said. “And then they suggested it. The hospital said, ‘Hey why don’t you come into the clinic and get the infusion?’ and that’s how I got here. And so far I think it’s been a really good experience. I certainly recommend it.”

The infusion cannot be given to any patient at any given time, however. The FDA sets strict guidelines for who may receive it.

Synergy Wellness Clinic has multiple locations, but it is offering the treatment at their office in Jones Valley located at 7105B Bailey Creek Circle in Huntsville. Appointments can be scheduled by calling 256-759-9167.

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