Ron DeSantis Opens Antibody Centers That Are Useless Against Omicron. The Florida governor is flogging monoclonals that experts say are no match for Omicron.
If Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis were a responsible leader dedicated to the well-being of his constituents, he would have made clear that the Regeneron monoclonal antibody being administered at his five new treatment sites is all but useless in the current COVID-19 surge.
But DeSantis is DeSantis, and therefore his own top priority. He is happy to offer false hope in the middle of a pandemic—as his state breaks infection records week after week—if he believes it is to his political advantage.
Last month, DeSantis held a press conference outside Ocala Medical Center with a sign reading “Early Treatment Saves Lives” and touted monoclonal antibodies as the answer to the COVID crisis. His surgeon general, Joe Ladapo, described vaccines, masks, and testing as a “trifecta” of “lunacy.”
Omicron had already begun to spread in Florida and elsewhere, so quickly that it was soon responsible for the overwhelming majority of new cases. The federal government stopped distributing two of the three mjaor monoclonal antibody treatments—Regeneron and Bamlanivimab—on the grounds they were ineffective against the new variants. The third treatment, Sotrovimab, remains in such short supply it is reserved for only the most vulnerable people.
DeSantis accused the Biden administration of falling victim to “hysteria.” Lapado made public a letter he wrote to Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra saying, “The federal government is is actively preventing the effective distribution of antibody treatments in the U.S.” Never mind that it was because the treatments themselves are ineffective.
On Jan. 3, DeSantis tweeted a video of himself standing with the “Early Treatment Saves Lives” sign outside at Broward Health.
“Instead of keeping a stranglehold on monoclonal antibodies, the federal government must release its stockpiles to states who want them and allow states to purchase these medications directly,” he said.
On Jan. 4, he posted a video of himself with the well-traveled sign in Jacksonville.
“Governor DeSantis is in Jacksonville ready to open a monoclonal antibody treatment site IF the federal government would provide the supply Florida needs,” he declared. On Jan. 5, he insisted, “With Omicron, there’s not enough evidence to say that Regeneron and the bamlanivimab work. There’s not enough evidence to say if it’s going to be as effective or more against Delta, we just don’t know.”
In fact, there was already considerable evidence to the contrary. Prominent medical experts were reaching a consensus that Regeneron and Bamlanivimab do not work against Omicron.
“It’s equivalent to giving them a placebo,” Dr. Jeanne Marrazzo, director of Infectious Disease at University of Alabama Medicine, told the Daily Beast. “We just assume there’s not going to be any benefit to using them.”
But on Jan. 7, the Biden administration caved. DeSantis reported that Florida had secured 15,000 doses of Regeneron. He announced that they would be distributed at five new sites.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis Opens Monoclonal Antibody Centers That Are Useless Against Omicron (thedailybeast.com)
Trump’s Favorite ‘Demon Sperm’ Doc Now Suggests Praying the COVID Vax Away
Stella Immanuel, the eccentric “demon sperm” doctor who was embraced and defended by ex-president Donald Trump for her evidence-free claims about curing COVID-19 with hydroxychloroquine, is back with another outlandish claim. This time, at a right-wing gathering over the weekend, Immanuel theorized that one can pray away the effects of the COVID-19 vaccination. “Every time we have prayed for people that have taken the vaccine because it is Luciferian,” she said at megachurch pastor Clay Clark’s ReAwaken America Tour stop in Arizona. “And the mention of the name of Jesus, every knee bows.” Immanuel further floated the idea of prayer reversing the effects of a vaccine merely with the utterance of Jesus’ name. “Each time we pray for people that have taken the vax, something, there is a reaction. A needle poke, the hands start shaking, and we cast this stuff out of people,” the Houston-based pediatrician added, while implying that the vaccine is the “devil” which one “must come at” with “the name of Jesus.”
Trump’s Favorite ‘Demon Sperm’ Doc Now Suggests Praying the COVID Vax Away (thedailybeast.com)