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AU Health offers new COVID prevention for high-risk patients

Published: Mar. 17, 2022 at 5:58 PM EDT
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AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - Augusta University Health is the only local medical facility offering a new way to stop the spread of COVID and keep immunocompromised people safe.

We spoke with one woman who has gone through treatment at the Georgia Cancer Center. She says this new treatment can help her live a more normal life moving forward.

In 2017, Eman Sharawy had an organ transplant leaving her vulnerable throughout the pandemic.

“I was worried about it,” she said.

She’s vaccinated and boosted. The medicine she is required to take could affect how the vaccine works.

“I wasn’t sure that the vaccines offered me full protection against COVID due to my immunocompromised status,” said Sharawy.

Augusta University is the only medical facility in the region to offer a new preventative measure for COVID called Evusheld.

Dr. Phillip Coule, chief medical officer, AU said: “What this does is gives them that protection and the response of their body via these injections, so they get several months of protection from COVID-19.”

It’s a two-shot injection of monoclonal antibodies.

“It can help destroy the virus or prevent them from getting an infection or give them a chance to develop their immunity from the infection,” he said. This therapy isn’t for everyone.

“This is for those very sick, complicated patients,” said Coule.

Patients like Sharawy or cancer patients going through treatment would be eligible.

“This therapy is just another step, another tool in the box to help fight COVID-19,” he said.

Protection should last anywhere from three to six months, which will give high-risk patients some peace of mind. Patients are eligible to get Evusheld if they are 12 or older, weigh at least 88 pounds, and are not currently infected with COVID or considered immunocompromised.

Sharawy said: “I have much more confidence in that, and I feel like I can get back to living life normally again as much as possible.”

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