CVS Health has been selected by the Department of Health and Human Services to pilot the administration of a limited supply of bamlanivimab, a monoclonal antibody therapy, with eligible COVID-19 patients at-risk of severe infection or complications resulting from the virus.
Under this pilot, the company's specialty pharmacy and infusion care business Coram will administer the intravenous therapy in patients’ homes or long-term care facilities to help meet the growing demand for these new treatments.
“These newly available, important COVID-19 treatments can make a difference for patients at high risk for severe illness or complications, but they need to be administered intravenously by health care providers and with the appropriate clinical expertise and oversight,” said Sree Chaguturu, chief medical officer, CVS Caremark and senior vice president, CVS Health. “Our Coram model allows us to meet patients where they are during the pandemic by delivering safe, clinically appropriate home-based care, and we stand ready to deploy our teams when and where the need is greatest as supply of these new monoclonal antibody treatments ramp up over the coming year.”
Coram began administering 1,000 doses of monoclonal antibody therapies for the treatment of COVID-19 in seven cities and their surrounding communities Dec. 3, including Boston, Chicago, Cleveland, Los Angeles, Milwaukee, Minneapolis and Tampa, as new COVID-19 infections continue to rise rapidly in these regions. Following the pilot, and as drug supply increases, Coram will scale this solution to additional markets in areas of greatest need.
Patients who meet eligibility criteria can be referred to Coram for treatment from a hospital, urgent care or telemedicine appointment, long-term care facility or their primary care physician following a positive diagnosis. There is no out-of-pocket cost to the patient for this care.
“Patients can rest assured they are receiving the best care possible through Coram in the safety and comfort of their own home or long-term care facility, and Coram is poised to continue to meet shifting health care demands as the importance and value of home-based care will undoubtedly outlive the pandemic,” said Prem Shah, executive vice president of CVS Specialty and Product Innovation. “This established and experienced clinical service further demonstrates CVS Health’s unique ability to touch all aspects of a person’s health to make their experience more accessible and affordable.”