U.S. government buys $330M worth of COVID-19 antibody doses from Lilly

Eli Lilly and Co. said Wednesday the U.S. government has agreed to buy $330 million worth of additional doses of its antibody treatment for COVID-19 to help meet the soaring national demand to treat people who have been infected with the virus.

Lilly’s therapy is cocktail of two antibodies, bamlanivimab and etesevimab. Under the purchase agreement, Lilly will supply 388,000 doses of etesevimab to complement doses of bamlanivimab previously purchased by the U.S. government,

The news comes about three weeks after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration lifted a two-month suspension on the Indianapolis-based drugmaker’s antibody therapy over concerns that it didn’t work well against the beta and gamma variants.

But Lilly’s cocktail has been shown to be highly effective against the delta variant, which is now the dominant strain of the coronavirus in the United States.

National demand for antibody treatments is skyrocketing. Across the country, several governors are boosting the antibodies as a primary treatment for people—including the unvaccinated—who have tested positive for COVID-19.

Federal shipments of the drugs—primarily supplied by drugmaker Regeneron Pharmaceuticals—increased fivefold in August to nearly 110,000 doses, with the majority going to states with low vaccination rates, the Associated Press reported.

In recent weeks, governors of Southern states that have been deluged with COVID-19 outbreaks have pushed the antibody treatments. Demand has soared in Florida, Texas and Louisiana, which have seen a spike in infections, and where hospitals are overwhelmed with unvaccinated patients.

The treatments are not vaccines, and do not prevent people from getting infected. However, they can keep many infected patients from getting sicker and needing hospitalization.

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5 thoughts on “U.S. government buys $330M worth of COVID-19 antibody doses from Lilly

  1. “The treatments are not vaccines, and do not prevent people from getting infected. However, they can keep many infected patients from getting sicker and needing hospitalization.”

    Sounds a whole lot like what the vaccines have shown they do: can still be infected and transmit to others but prevent more severe illness in those most at risk…?

    1. Exactly, it’s bizarre that there’s so much of a push for vaccination when antibody injections accomplish the same goal, and the natural immunity that results is superior to vaccination by itself.

      On top of that, it’s bizarre nobody is screening vaccinated people for COVID-19 positivity. Shouldn’t we be excluding positive vaccinated people from public areas?

    1. You could try reading the article…

      “Lilly will supply 388,000 doses of etesevimab to complement doses of bamlanivimab previously purchased by the U.S. government,”

  2. Just received the antibody Cocktail Tuesday- day 8 of the Covid symptoms. Feel so much better today..
    Suppose to get the antibody infusion between 1-10 days of the onset of Covid symptoms…

    Only a few Hospitals in the Indianapolis area are giving this treatment- under your doctors request..

    Will see how much my insurance will pay plus what the cost will be for Joe Q Public…
    Not the Biden freeloaders……

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