Monoclonal antibody supply to fight omicron variant ‘exhausted’ at San Antonio infusion center, TDHS says

TDHS says Austin, El Paso, Fort Worth, and The Woodlands also used their supply of the monoclonal antibody effective against omicron variant

Monoclonal antibody therapy does not replace the COVID-19 vaccine, health expert says

SAN ANTONIO – Monoclonal antibody infusion centers in San Antonio and other Texas cities will not be offering monoclonal antibodies used to fight the omicron variant for the remainder of the year due to a national shortage, according to the Texas Department of State Health Services (TDHS).

In a news release, TDHS officials said infusion centers in San Antonio, Austin, El Paso, Fort Worth, and The Woodlands have used their supply of sotrovimab, the monoclonal antibody effective against the COVID-19 omicron variant.

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Because the federal government controls the distribution of monoclonal antibodies, infusion centers won’t be able to offer the infusions until January, when they are expected to receive a shipment of the antibodies, TDHS officials said.

Health officials say other monoclonal antibodies are not effective against the omicron variant, which accounts for more than 90% of new cases.

Those who had appointments at one of the infusion centers this week will be contacted directly, TDHS said.

People who are infected with a different variant of COVID-19 can still receive other monoclonal antibodies at the infusion centers, officials say.

The FDA authorized two new oral antiviral pills -- Pfizer’s pill, Paxlovid, and Merck’s molnupiravir -- last week. TDHS officials say those pills will be available soon. However, they are expected to have a limited supply.

TDHS officials advise those to protect themselves from severe symptoms of COVID-19 by getting vaccinated, receiving a booster shot if eligible, and taking extra precautions to prevent the spread of the virus.

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About the Author

Emily Martin is the KSAT Insider Membership Producer. She earned a journalism degree from Texas State University, where she was news director at KTSW, the campus radio station. She has also interned at KXAN and KUT in Austin.

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