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FL Surgeon General: Biden Admin ‘Preventing’ COVID Antibody Treatments

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Dr. Joseph Ladapo
Dr. Joseph Ladapo

Florida’s surgeon general Dr. Joseph Ladapo has alleged that the Biden administration is “actively preventing” the distribution of monoclonal antibody treatments for COVID-19, causing an “immediate and life-threatening shortage of treatment options.”

Ladapo made the allegations in a letter to Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Xavier Becerra on Tuesday, pointing out that the federal government had reduced the number of antibody treatments Florida could receive earlier this year “without any advanced notice.”

“The sudden suspension of multiple monoclonal antibody therapy treatments from distribution to Florida removes a health care provider’s ability to decide the best treatment options for their patients in this state,” Ladapo wrote. “This shortsightedness is especially evident given that the federal government effectively prohibited states from purchasing these monoclonal antibodies and serving their populations directly.”

Ladapo addressed the HHS’s recent decision to pause the distribution of antibody treatments because they were unlikely to be as effective against the Omicron variant, saying federal agencies should not limit Florida’s access to “any available treatments for COVID-19.”

In September, the Biden administration placed restrictions on how COVID-19 monoclonal antibody treatments would be distributed to states, a move that disproportionately harmed Republican-led states.

“Federal health officials plan to allocate specific amounts to each state under the new approach, in an effort to more evenly distribute the 150,000 doses that the government makes available each week,” Politico reported. “The approach is likely to cut into shipments to GOP-led states in the Southeast that have made the pricey antibody-drug a central part of their pandemic strategy, while simultaneously spurning mask mandates and other restrictions.”

Politico pointed out that the decision was a shift from distribution based on an “as-needed basis.”

“Still, until recently, the administration had shipped the antibody treatments to states on an as-needed basis — with top health officials in early August going as far as encouraging those battling the Delta surge to seek even more supply,” the outlet added. “But demand from a handful of southern states has exploded since then, state and federal officials said, raising concerns they were consuming a disproportionate amount of the national supply. Seven states — Texas, Florida, Mississippi, Tennessee, Georgia, Louisiana and Alabama — accounted for 70 percent of all orders in early September.”

Florida Senator Marco Rubio (R) responded to the decision in two different tweets.

“Antibody treatments aren’t a substitute for vaccines,” Rubio tweeted. “But they have prevented thousands of hospitalizations including in breakthrough cases. Now in a move that reeks of partisan payback against states like Florida, the Biden administration is rationing these treatments.”

 

His second tweet contained a video with the caption, “Every day it’s something new with these people in the White House. The decision to ration antibody treatments proves they focused on public health. What they want is power and control.”

 

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COVID-19

Freedom in the UK: Johnson ends ‘all Covid measures’ including mask wearing

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Kid Mask

The United Kingdom is enjoying a huge announcement. Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced “the end of all Covid measures introduced to combat the Omicron variant – compulsory mask-wearing on public transport and in shops, guidance to work from home and vaccine certificates – from next week” reports The Guardian.

For those with coronavirus, the legal requirement for them to self-isolate will also be allowed to lapse when the regulations expire on March 24. Johnson also announced an immediate end for students to wear masks at secondary schools.

“From tomorrow we will no longer require face masks in classrooms and the Department for Education will shortly remove national guidance on their use in communal areas,” Johnson told the Commons.

“In the country at large we will continue to suggest the use of face coverings in enclosed or crowded spaces, particularly when you come into contact with people you don’t normally meet, but we will trust the judgment of the British people and no longer criminalise anyone who chooses not to wear one.”

The Prime Minister said Covid data was “showing that time and again this government got the toughest decisions right” and that plan B rules that were put in place in December could all be lifted from next Thursday, the day after a pre-existing review point.

The Guardian notes Britain had expected Johnson would soon be ending work-from-home guidance and the mandate to show a certificate proving vaccination or proof of a recent negative Covid test. However, the immediate lifting of mandatory mask rules will “come as a surprise to some.”

Johnson is receiving some push back from some teaching and health unions. The general secretary of the Royal College of Nursing, said ministers would “regret sending the wrong signal to the public for political expediency”.

Joint general secretary of the National Education Union Mary Bousted said, “While the trend amongst secondary aged children is down, it is however uncertain, due to the short time schools have been back since the Christmas holidays, that this trend will continue. Such uncertainty could lead to a pronounced risk of increased disruption with children and staff having to isolate.”

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