The administration for Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has blasted President Joe Biden for capping the amount of monoclonal treatments states like Florida can receive. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has taken over the national distribution of the treatments.
The HHS says their leadership will provide “equitable distribution” and “with consistent, fairly distributed supply over the coming weeks.” However, DeSantis’ press secretary, Christina Pushaw, said the move by the Biden administration was “regrettable.”
“It is regrettable that the Biden administration would play politics with people’s lives during a pandemic by withholding a life-saving treatment and providing mixed messages to Americans,” Pushaw said to the Washington Examiner.
Kyle Lamb, a data analyst in the office of the governor, tweeted DeSantis would fight the HHS’s distribution tactics.
“’We’re going to work like hell to overcome the restrictions and obstacles the HHS and Biden administration have put on us (with mABs distribution),’ says @GovRonDeSantis.”
"We're going to work like hell to overcome the restrictions and obstacles the HHS and Biden administration have put on us (with mABs distribution," says @GovRonDeSantis
He adds they cut Florida distribution to hospitals in half, and it's supposed to now suffice state-run sites.
— Kyle Lamb (@kylamb8) September 16, 2021
Monoclonal antibody treatments have been a priority for DeSantis and has rolled out 25 treatment sites across Florida. The treatments are designed to be injected into the patient early on in their COVID infection and are described by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as “laboratory-made proteins that mimic the immune system’s ability to fight off harmful antigens such as viruses.”
Earlier this month, DeSantis said it provides a way for Floridians to get treatment rather than sit at home and isolate themselves through their infection.
“For too long during this whole ordeal – particularly since we had the monoclonals – the message to a lot of patients was basically, ‘Hey if you’re infected just go home and hope you don’t get deathly ill enough to come back to the hospital,’” DeSantis said. “Those days are over in Florida.”
Earlier this week, DeSantis also commented about the treatment’s effect on Floridians, saying it “has made a real difference.”
“Our focus on early treatment with the monoclonal antibodies has made a real difference,” DeSantis said Tuesday. “Our admissions today are the lowest they’ve been since the middle of July, and it’s fallen, very, very quickly. Over the last many weeks, we had a big decline.”
The Biden administration has given no indication how long Florida’s monoclonal treatment access will be limited.
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