Community of Hope, DC Health, and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services partner to expand access to monoclonal antibody therapy to COVID-19 patients in Washington, DC’s Ward 8
WASHINGTON, D.C., (Sept. 21, 2021) -- Community of Hope, in partnership with DC Health and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), announced today that they are expanding access to COVID-19 monoclonal antibody (mAb) treatments and will begin administering the therapies at Community of Hope’s health center in Ward 8. For people who are at high risk for developing severe COVID-19 illness and have tested positive for the COVID-19 virus or are unvaccinated and have been exposed to someone who has tested positive, this promising mAb treatment has been shown to help prevent the progression of the disease that might otherwise require hospitalization.
With the rapid spread of the Delta variant and a major surge in COVID-19 case rates in the community served, Community of Hope will be offering access to the mAb treatment at the Conway Health and Resource Center. As of today, patients can receive the mAb treatment on Tuesdays and Fridays with appointments from 9:00 am to 11:00 am. To confirm eligibility for the treatment and book an appointment, patients should contact Community of Hope at 202-470-3081. As part of this initiative, Community of Hope will be able to treat up to 16 patients per week and hopes to expand capacity in the future.
Community of Hope will administer Regeneron’s REGEN-COV delivered through subcutaneous injection (four shots in the arms, thighs, and abdomen). If administered within 10 days of the onset of COVID-19 symptoms, the one-time therapy is highly effective in neutralizing the virus and preventing symptoms from worsening.
“With the resurgence of positive Covid-19 cases in our community, this partnership comes at a crucial time,” said Community of Hope’s CEO, Kelly Sweeney McShane. “As a federally qualified health center, we are focused on improving health equity in bringing hope to under-resourced areas of Washington, DC. Adding the antibody treatment to our COVID-19 testing and vaccine services will ensure more people will survive this devastating pandemic.
“Our neighbors in Ward 8 have lower rates of COVID-19 vaccinations and have been disproportionately affected by the pandemic with the Delta variant bringing a new wave of challenges. We are proud to play an important role in ensuring that our patients and community are able to get the treatment they need,” she continued.
On March 17, 2021, HHS announced it was investing $150 million to increase access to mAb therapy for high-risk patients in underserved and disadvantaged communities across the country. With support from KPMG LLP, HHS is developing new prototype models for expanding access to mAb treatment and leveraging an existing network of health care partners to provide the therapy for underserved and disadvantaged populations.
“Vaccination is our best tool for preventing severe illness and hospitalizations due to COVID-19; however, we know that many of our residents of color continue to defer vaccination. This Initiative will help to ensure equal access to life-saving treatment for all District residents,” said Dr. LaQuandra Nesbitt, Director of DC Health. “Community of Hope is an integral part of our city’s response to COVID-19 and with the availability of the monoclonal antibody therapy, we hope to preserve hospital capacity and move one step closer toward ending this pandemic.”
Community of Hope is the first community health center in Washington D.C. to join this national initiative and the first site in the initiative to offer subcutaneous injection as the only treatment administration option. Community of Hope joins a growing list of mAbs therapy providers supported by KPMG and sponsored by HHS as part of the federal effort to help end COVID-19 and improve health equity in under-resourced communities across the country. In addition to the new site at Community of Hope, more than 50 infusion sites have now been established or expanded under this initiative in Landover, MD; San Diego, CA; Detroit, MI; Barnstable County, MA; Houston, TX; Beckley, WV; Worcester, MA; western Michigan; southern Missouri, northeast South Carolina, Southern Mississippi, northern Mississippi, central Mississippi, south-central North Carolina, south-central Louisiana, and multiple regions of Alabama.
The mAb therapy is the first COVID-19 treatment granted emergency use authorization by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for outpatient use. A Phase 3 clinical trial showed that the antibody therapy reduced the risk of hospitalization or death by up to 70% in patients who received the drug intravenously compared to those who received a placebo.
The FDA emergency use authorization provides additional information on eligibility for mAb treatment. Treatment is offered regardless of immigration status, health insurance coverage, or ability to pay. For more information, please visit https://www.communityofhopedc.org/antibody-treatment.
About Community of Hope:
Celebrating 40 years of service in Washington, DC, Community of Hope (COH) is a rapidly growing, innovative, and mission-driven nonprofit. Our team of almost 400 caring, dedicated staff members provides healthcare, housing, and supportive services for individuals and families including those experiencing homelessness in low-income and under-resourced communities. We operate three community health centers, a community resource hub, a Family Success Center. Our Health services include medical, dental, and emotional wellness as well as extensive patient support services. We work to end and prevent homelessness by providing housing and supportive services such as employment search and training, housing search, mentoring, and youth services.
About Crush COVID:
A treatment for COVID-19 is here and is available in every state at hundreds of locations across the country. With the help of KPMG, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), state and local health departments, and local hospitals and health clinics, eligible patients will have increased access to mAb treatment in a growing number of underserved and disadvantaged communities through this initiative. Authorized by the FDA, monoclonal antibody therapy (mAb) is available to patients who have tested positive for COVID-19 and are considered at high risk for progressing to severe COVID-19 and/or hospitalization. To learn more about eligibility and find a treatment location near you, visit https://crushcovid.com.