St. Joseph hospital in Eureka announces new COVID-19 treatment clinic

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EUREKA, Calif. (KIEM)- In the middle of the recent surge of COVID-19 hospitalizations, St. Joseph hospital in Eureka has a new tool in their battle against COVID.

St. Joseph hospital announced on Wednesday that it has launched a monoclonal antibody treatment therapy clinic and will be operating at a newly renovated area at the hospital.

You maybe be wondering how this treatment works when would I know I need this type of treatment and the million-dollar question, how much would a procedure like this cost?

Well, the first two questions Dr. Roberta Luskin-Hawk can answer.

“This is like giving an immune response to someone who doesn’t have one right. So, the vaccine is meant to create our own immunities, so we don’t get sick,” said Dr. Luskin-Hawk. “This is for people who don’t have that benefit typically of the immune responses, so we are giving them antibodies to help them fight this virus before it gets out of hand.”       

The infusion treatment takes about 30 minutes and the patient is monitored for an hour for any side effects.

As for the cost of this treatment, the hospital says that there is no cost to the patient and the treatment is offered regardless of immigration status or health insurance.

“The drug itself is actually free through the government. There are normally charges for infusion or having to bring in nurses and some other things but for all of our charges we have a financial aid policy.”     

As we know, staffing has been an issue for many hospitals in the area, but St. Joseph has received eight new traveling caregivers, six intensive care unit RNs and two respiratory therapists to help provide help with patients with more severe symptoms of COVID.