Trinity Health has opened an outpatient infusion clinic for administering bamlanivimab, or BAM, a monoclonal antibody treatment for COVID-19. BAM was authorized by the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) under an Emergency Use Authorization declaration in November 2019 for the treatment of mild-to-moderate COVID-19 in adult and pediatric patients who qualify for treatment. The goal of this medication is to keep patients from worsening to the point of requiring hospitalization due to COVID-19.
How to Obtain Treatment
- Please note that consent for treatment is required.
- Trinity Health patients - please call your primary care provider to request a referral for treatment.
- Non-Trinity-Health patients – please call your primary care provider.
- If you do not have a primary care provider, call Trinity Health at 701-857-DR4U (3748).
A Trinity Health provider working with the infusion clinic will review the referral form upon receipt and contact patients who qualify for BAM to coordinate services as soon as possible. The infusion clinic is located at Trinity Health East Ridge, 1250 21st Ave SE, Minot.
Bamlanivimab IS NOT authorized for use in patients:
- Who are hospitalized due to COVID-19, OR
- Who require oxygen therapy due to COVID-19, OR
- Who require an increase in baseline oxygen flow rate due to COVID-19 in those on chronic oxygen therapy due to underlying non-COVID-19 related comorbidity
- <12 years of age or <40kg (MUST be Age > 12 AND weight > 40kg)
- >10 days since onset of symptoms
- Whose oxygen saturation level is <90% [Per Infectious Disease recommendations]
Patients interested in BAM should read the Fact Sheet for Patients, Parents and Caregivers and the Frequently Asked Questions below.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are monoclonal antibodies?
Antibodies are proteins that people’s bodies make to fight viruses, such as the virus that causes COVID-19. Antibodies made in a laboratory act a lot like natural antibodies to limit the amount of virus in your body. They are called monoclonal antibodies.
Monoclonal antibody treatment with bamlanivimab, here on referred to as BAM, are for people who have tested positive for COVID-19 and have mild to moderate symptoms. These treatments are allowed by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) under an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) while clinical studies continue to look at their usefulness and safety. For more information about EUA’s, click here: FDA Emergency Use Authorization – COVID-19 Drugs
Who can get bamlanivimab (BAM)?
BAM can be used by people with mild to moderate COVID-19 who:
- Test positive for SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19).
- Are within 10 days of the start of their symptoms.
- Are age 12 or older and weigh at least 88 pounds.
- Are at high risk of getting very sick from COVID-19 or of needing to be admitted to a hospital because of COVID-19.
Contact your doctor or health care provider about whether you should get treatment with BAM.
Who is considered at high risk?
High risk for progressing to severe COVID-19 and/or hospitalization is defined as patients who meet at least one of the following criteria:
- Have a body mass index (BMI) greater than 35.
- Have chronic kidney disease.
- Have diabetes.
- Have immunosuppressive disease.
- Are currently receiving immunosuppressive treatment.
- Are 65 years of age or older.
- Are 55 years of age or older AND have one or more of the following:
– Cardiovascular disease.
– Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease/other chronic respiratory disease.
- Are 12-17 years of age AND have one or more of the following:
– Body mass index greater than 85th percentile for their age and gender, based on CDC: Clinical Growth Charts.
– Sickle cell disease.
– Congenital or acquired heart disease.
– Neurodevelopmental disorders, for example, cerebral palsy.
– A medical-related technological dependence; for example, tracheostomy, gastrostomy, or positive pressure ventilation (not related to COVID-19).
– Asthma, reactive airway, or other chronic respiratory disease that requires daily medication for control.
Does treatment work?
Though clinical trials for BAM are ongoing, studies have shown a decrease in hospitalizations and emergency room visits and a decrease in the amount of virus in an infected person’s blood.
What are the side effects of bamlanivimab?
The most common reported side effects with BAM are nausea, diarrhea, dizziness, headache, itchiness, and vomiting. Rare severe allergic reactions have been reported in clinical studies.
Because this is a new medication that has not been used for a long time and in large numbers of patients, it is possible that not all risks are known yet. Because BAM is an antibody treatment, it could get in the way of your body’s own immune response to future infections with COVID-19, or they could affect your immune response to a vaccine for COVID-19.
The side effects of getting any medicine by vein may include brief pain, bleeding, bruising of the skin, soreness, swelling, and possible infection at the infusion site.
Where can I get bamlanivimab?
Talk to your doctor or other health care professional about whether you should get treatment with BAM. If you qualify for BAM, you’ll be directed to the infusion clinic located at Trinity Health East Ridge, 1250 21st Ave SE, Minot, ND. The clinic accepts referrals from providers across the region both within and outside of Trinity Health.
How is bamlanivimab given?
BAM must be given into a vein by intravenous (IV) infusion. Antibodies may be administered only in settings where health care providers have immediate access to medications to treat any reactions and where emergency medical systems are available, if needed.
What is the cost of bamlanivimab?
The federal government provided states with initial supplies of BAM. Consequently, there is no cost to patients at this time. However, some hospitals may bill insurance companies to administer the drug. More information on insurance coverage of antibody treatments can be found at CMS: Coverage of Monoclonal Antibody Products to Treat COVID-19 (PDF).
Will this affect my ability to get the COVID-19 vaccine?
We do not yet know how effective vaccines are in someone who has previously received an antibody treatment like BAM for a COVID-19 infection, or whether the antibody treatment could interfere with your body’s own immune response to a vaccine. Once you have had COVID-19, you are very unlikely to be reinfected for three months afterward. So, if you receive BAM, you should delay receiving a vaccine for three month.
Helpful Resource Links
Please view the links below for additional information from North Dakota Department of Health and Eli Lilly and Company: