With Omicron being the dominant variant of the COVID-19 virus in Kentucky, Baptist Health Corbin is closing their Covid-19 Monoclonal Outpatient Clinic today. The current outpatient monoclonal IV treatment is not effective against the Omicron variant. As a result, the hospital has exhausted the medication inventory, and no doses are available for outpatient or emergency patients.
In an interview with Hospital President Anthony Powers and Head Pharmacist Lynn McArthur, they explained that of the three drugs being used to combat COVID-19 in general, only one of them works against the Omicron variant. That particular drug is in short supply nationwide.
Lynn explains, "Omicron is less severe than Delta. In most cases, people will have cold and flu-like symptoms and will recover without needing medical treatment." She said that self-treatment and personal symptom management help significantly with this new variant. Being vaccinated and receiving a booster shot also helps lessen the symptoms.
Now, the hospital is near capacity, some elective surgeries are being postponed, making room for patients with a worsened case of COVID-19. Anthony spoke to the testing and exposure. He says, "If you feel like you've been exposed to COVID, try to find anywhere else to get tested. That will help lessen the strain on the hospital treating patients with severe symptoms. Use urgent care, testing facilities, and even family doctors. Going to the hospital will result in a long wait time for you and everyone else there."
Billy Mosley, The Kentucky Daily Lead Reporter