Indiana hospitals begin administering COVID-19 treatment drug from Eli Lilly

Coronavirus

INDIANAPOLIS — IU Health and other hospitals around the state are beginning to administer Eli Lilly’s COVID-19 treatment, bamlanivimab.

The treatment is for COVID-19 patients with mild or moderate symptoms who are not hospitalized but are at high risk of developing severe symptoms.

IU Health received 500 doses of bamlanivimab. The hospital just converted a conference space into an infusion center.

“It’s a one-hour infusion during which they’re monitored,” said Dr. Michelle Saysana, chief quality and safety officer. “After the infusion is over, we stop the IV. They have to hang out with us for an hour to make sure there aren’t any reactions.”

Saysana explained the separate facility will have a positive impact on the further spread of the virus, at least in the hospital.

“That’s actually why we chose to repurpose space so that we weren’t mixing patients with COVID with other patients,” Saysana said.

Bamlanivimab is a part of Operation Warp Speed. The main idea of this treatment is to prevent people from winding up in the hospital due to serious symptoms.

“We’ve heard that from folks across the state, other health systems, that it gives people some light,” Saysana said. “I think it’s the bridge till we get the vaccine.”

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