LIVE: Florida Governor Ron DeSantis discusses COVID-19, 'Early treatment saves lives'

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_video link="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2HXzu5-ASAc"][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text][/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]be capable every single day and so again uh starting tomorrow morning at 0-900 this site will be open for up to 320 patients every single day we also will starting tomorrow up in north florida in leon county in tallahassee at the governor's square mall at the old sears building that will also be open starting tomorrow and so once that happens we will have 21 different sites throughout the state of florida and each one of those sites can do more than 300 treatments every day i've had a lot of success with this this is you know we spent a lot of time in southwest florida and others doing the vaccine distribution for many many months obviously you have a lot of people millions and millions of people have done that you know that is to try to prevent i mean ideally to prevent infection but certainly that if you do get infected to protect you against severe illness um but that's on kind of the preventive end this monoclonal antibody the regeneron is okay uh if you are infected you know what are your early treatment options and so this is something that you do by and large once you're infected it is approved for prophylaxis and in certain high-risk situations like a nursing home you can go in affirmatively and do that and we have we have done that and and will continue to do it but generally speaking this is something that will be for people uh who have contracted covid and that's both vaccinated and unvaccinated because in florida the the very vulnerable people by and large are all vaccinated uh and it is helping but if they get infected they still have this option as well and so if you come in you can get it either in the uh with an iv or a subcutaneous with with injections it's most of the stuff that we're doing is mostly going to be subcutaneous they think all the sites probably offer iv but that you got to be hooked onto that for an hour whereas with the with the shots you're talking about a matter of minutes to be able to do that but if you do have covet and you contract it coming in and getting this treatment early has been very effective at resolving the symptoms keeping people out of the hospital and saving lives and so we've um now we'll have 21 sites so we'll have them in okaloosa county we have it in panama city we'll have it starting tomorrow in tallahassee we have one in pasco county pinellas county hillsborough county we have one in manatee we have one in charlotte we have one in bonita springs right here in collier we have one in polk county we have one in orlando and orange county we have one at the villages in sumter county one in alachua county and then on the east coast of florida we have jacksonville ormond beach merritt island uh st lucie county west palm beach pomp pembroke pines and miami-dade so that's 21 sites up to 320 a pop this has been approved for emergency use the same time basically that the pfizer and the moderna received emergency use authorization last year obviously most attention was on that this was though something that has been administered in florida uh through most of our hospital systems for the whole time since december of 2020 and actually before then we had some hospital systems that were doing different types of trials on this and uh and so this has been a part and a lot of people have gotten it however became pretty clear to us as we started to see more and more people get admitted to the hospital this summer most of these folks didn't even know about uh the the ability to get a monoclonal antibody and so uh when we looked at the hospital census when we talked to different health systems you know they said um well one the vast majority of people that were being admitted were not vaccinated and but then the 90 percent of the people admitted didn't get the monoclonal prior to uh being admitted to the hospital so we saw that there was a a need to raise the visibility of this but also expand access to it simply because a lot of the hospitals if they're doing the iv because they started doing iv before it was approved for subcutaneous so they'll have only so many people they can have on that it takes a couple hours each person with soup to nuts and so we knew hey as more people know about this we want to make sure that people have options to be able to do it it had been up to this point before we set up our sites you needed a referral from a physician to be able to go you don't need that now because we have a standing order from the surgeon general florida saying that you can come in obviously you have to meet the criteria for for emergency use but that criteria is relatively broad and so you can come in you don't need to get a prescription to be able to come here and get it and again both clinical trial data and real world shows a significant reduction in high-risk people who then uh don't need to be hospitalized and hospitalization so that's really what we're trying to do uh we understand when you have something that's airborne like a delta you know people are going to be exposed to it uh and you see that really everywhere delta's come through you know you've seen that so hopefully you're protected with preventative on the front end but certainly if you do get exposed or get infected what are you able to do here in this monoclonal treatment is probably you know one of the best uh best ways to be able to do it it's important you do it early though if you wait till you're very very ill and in need of hospital admission or intensive care these antibodies at that point probably have missed their window to really nuke this if you do it early i mean you just talk to some of the people going through these sites across the state they will say 24-48 hours a lot of their symptoms have been resolved if they go in early and so that's a really good thing so some of those folks i mean we've done i think we've done 10 12 000 treatments just in the last few weeks since we've been doing the sites and we're doing thousands every day just think a lot of those folks or certainly some of those folks would have needed to be admitted to a hospital had they not had access to that treatment and so it's good for people's health which is the most important thing but it also makes sure that um you know you're you're not having uh emissions explode continue to explode and that takes a lot of stress off the hospital this is a treatment that's free to the patient the regeneron was purchased by the federal government so everything the whole stock was bought and whatever florida draws down whatever is administered is not charged to the patient so people talk about thousands of dollars just understand that's misinformation you're not going to be charged thousands of dollars um how much it costs the taxpayer i mean you could look that up but that whatever it was it's done so we have it we might as well use it and that's that's the philosophy uh there's another the eli lilly monoclonal has not done as well against delta there is one with glaxosmithkline that is not something the feds have purchased or anything so that it's available in much more limited numbers from what we can tell in florida but it would be just like any other drug on the market to be able to do but this regeneron is something that you're going to be able uh to have so we encourage people you know if you do if you are infected uh particularly if you are in a high-risk group this is something that's got a proven track record now the folks who generally qualify under the emergency use of authorization you know are folks who are are older people that may have immune immune system people who are overweight i think it's a bmi of 25 people who are diabetic people have kidney problems chronic heart or lung conditions so when you think of that really if you're probably 50 or above you're probably going to qualify on this and of course if you look the hospitalizations uh overwhelmingly skew 50 and above uh and of course the mortality skus um you know much older uh with this uh with this virus then than in other ones like h1n1 so if you are in those risk groups this can really make a difference and we want to make sure that you have the ability to access that so if you want to get more information on where you can find treatments near you you can go to floridahealthcovid19.gov so they'll be starting tomorrow morning 21 different sites operating in florida seven days a week there's also though other ways to get the monoclonals as i've said the health systems have been offering this and so we've tried to space this out around the state so that most people have the ability to get here in a relatively reasonable car drive it's not going to be five minutes from everyone but you know hopefully we have it so that not very many people need to drive two or three hours however if it's not as convenient for you these are not the only way you can get the monoclonals most hospitals are offering them other doctors are offering i think actually some of the emergency ken was talking about you know some of them are starting to offer it as well so floridahealthcovid19.gov has the sites there's also other sites that have been offering it all along and if you want to make an appointment you can go to patientportalfl where you'll be able to go this site in leon uh should be live on that website soon all the other sites are live and you're able to to do it we did have a question on one or two of the sites about people being booked out uh four or five days in advance uh we've worked with that to to try to address that at the end of the day this is a time-sensitive treatment you know we want to be getting people in particular the high-risk people in immediately uh now obviously if you're fully booked that's one thing uh but we've encouraged the folks on the ground to um you know to make sure that you're getting as many people in as you can as soon as you can so these are um this is making a difference uh we're and ken shep you'll talk about some of it if you get it early it's got a great record and uh hopefully we'll be able to resolve uh your symptoms satisfactorily and again we're trying to do uh reduce the need for hospitalization take this from you know between having the three vaccines available and then between having a monoclonal you know you can really take this and make it something that's more consistent with like a flu level risk but you got to avail yourselves of it and you got to make sure that um that you're doing it early so uh we look forward to being able to serve patients here we think it'll be obviously collier but some of the surrounding counties this is uh one to kind of get some of those more rural areas as well and we obviously welcome from wherever you come from uh come on in and and help yourself if you need to help all right i'm gonna uh bring up ken shepkey to say a few things about what we're doing as well thank you governor unfortunately it does look like covet 19 is going to be with us for the foreseeable future so we really do need two strategies obviously the prevention arm the vaccines are our best prevention strategy and then we need our treatment arm and now thanks to the governor's rollout of this we now have wide available availability to this treatment so for the vaccines i know a number of folks were wanted to wait and see some extra safety data especially some of the the pregnant women that's quite understandable i'm hoping that folks will now be a little reassured that we've got full fda approval now on on the pfizer vaccine and now thanks to some recent safety data on pregnant women the american college of obstetrics and gynecology and the society from return on fetal medicine have both come out strongly in favor of advising pregnant women to go ahead and get that vaccine so if you haven't looked at that recently and you haven't been vaccinated yet encourage you go and take a look at that and see if that might encourage you to get the vaccine but the vaccine takes up to six weeks to develop that protection and that's not going to help you get infected today that's really where the treatment arm comes in and that's where these monoclonal antibodies are so important because they can give you effective treatment against the virus immediately these antibodies will immediately attack the virus get it out of your system improve your your your your outcome and as the governor said early is better than later like everything else in medicine early treatment is better than better than later it's more effective then we've heard dozens of stories all around the state of people having great outcomes and you know one story that really sat with me was as a woman who went to our jacksonville site and her picture was all over the news she was so sick she just couldn't stand up she laid on the ground and someone snapped a picture of that and i had the privilege of getting to speak with her and she really tells us that she thinks regeneron saved her life her mother had seen one of the governor's press conferences and learned about the monoclonal antibodies that's how she knew to come and get it and she got there really sick and now she tells me she thinks she would have been one of the people in the icu on the ventilator and perhaps even died and she very well may be right so for someone like that i would i would encourage you if you are high risk don't wait until you're really bad go ahead and get early as the governor mentioned we are we vastly increase the access across the state not just with our sites but emergency departments are doing it fire rescue ems agencies are doing urgent care centers are doing it so please evaluate yourself for that thank you kevin okay so tomorrow zero nine hundred doors will be open obviously they'll be accepting appointments and they will be doing walk-ups and then also tallahassee will have a site open as well so there'll be 21 sites up to 300 300 plus uh uh treatments on every single one of those every so that is uh that's thousands of people a day which um you know will really it is making a difference but obviously we'll be continue to make a difference going forward so i'd urge everybody uh who fits this criteria uh particularly if something covet is something you know that you have a specific risk for if you do find yourself testing positive you come in here also we uh for nursing homes you know we've had more nursing homes cases and if you have that uh this is something where you can have a strike team go in and and apply treatment to folks there and you know our nursing home residents are almost all vaccinated but you still have breakthrough cases and these are some of the folks that are the most vulnerable and the vaccine may help them but it may not be providing them a hundred percent protection and so if they are infected this would be an option that they could avail themselves as well so we'd encourage you to do it okay have some take some time yes sir thank you the first one your opposition both democrats and some of the media have politicized this treatment and it's kind of send a fake narrative out to the people out there need this treatment uh how long are they about that and what is the impact of that so it's sad that with with with kovid from really the very beginning uh it's been politicized particularly by a lot of national corporate media outlets and and it's got to stop so this monoclonal this is not anything that i dreamt up this is something that got an emergency use authorization it was given heck but when in the experimental phase it was given to the president of the united states when he had when he had covid it's been used the trial data is good people have had great experiences with it and we saw that this was being underutilized you know we saw that there were patients most of these patients going in most of them were not vaccinated um but at the same time it's like okay if you're infected what do you do and so if they had now better knowledge of this a lot of them would have availed themselves of this and so there was a thought out there by some that oh this is going to cost you a lot of money or this is just for some you know they were talking about oh trying to help regeneron like the prophet they've already sold all this there's no uh anything that's happening so fake narratives i think are very harmful it can potentially convince some people that that this is not a viable option again no one's forced to do this it's your choice you've got to make the best decisions for you but if you do find yourself you know with covid uh what are the options to be able to do and the fact is this was underutilized you know even fauci said it was underutilized he acknowledged that and so uh that's what the name of the game is helping people it does have a track record of doing it you know as dr shepky said you know we have a woman who was in really bad shape in jacksonville she got it within 48 hours she was feeling better and said she wouldn't have made it if it wasn't for that so i would hate to see politicization of of of a treatment end up dissuading somebody from kind of from seeking avail themselves or something that could help them it could help keep them out of the hospital could even help save their life so don't be that guy that lets your partisan agenda overcome providing good accurate information and providing access to treatments for people who may need it and hopefully we're beyond some of those games but i can tell you um you know this has made a difference for people it has made a difference the whole time but now there's a much broader segment of society that understands this is available you know i would talk to people who are very very well versed in a lot of stuff with covet they had no idea what the monoclonals were and and then when i started we talked to the hospital say hey the people that are being admitted how many of them got this treatment they're like 90 plus percent didn't never got it and so we start thinking ourselves okay this can really uh make a difference and so so please um it's it's a strong track record it's been uh it's been endorsed by uh the two most recent presidential administrations doctors all across florida and the country have used it and used it very effectively and is there any science that actually backs that up so the question on these vaccine passports is okay you know our view from the beginning on vaccine we want to make it available to all but we want to mandate it for none because i don't know your circumstances you have to make decisions for example we went in and we were the first state to go into nursing homes with vaccines and we had strike teams prior to cvs and walgreens being ready to do it and the reason why we did that was these are the most vulnerable folks to covet are these nursing home residents they're elderly they have a lot of co-morbidities generally and so we wanted to get them that vaccine to be able to obviously protect them but then liberate them to have a more normal existence so they're not always concerned about covet so we went in did it many of these seniors were so happy people were crying but you know what there were some that just didn't didn't want to take it that was their their decision and you know my view is let's make it available let's provide it but ultimately it's the individual's decision and so the flip side of that is you shouldn't be penalized uh and not be able to participate in society uh because you've made a good choice people have recovered from covid uh and and do have immunity and and that's not recognized when you start talking about doing some of these mandates it's very unscientific i mean the science would say that if you've recovered from covet you know you've got immunity and it's proven to be pretty doggone durable there was a study just out of israel that was really really strong in terms of this and so you can understand if somebody has recovered why they may make there's other people one of the one of the ladies that we helped with this she had a medical condition so she wasn't really a good candidate for for some of the mrm rna vaccines why should we second guess that and impose a mandate on her or not let her go to a restaurant or some of these other things and then i think also just the theory behind some of the vaccine passports was that the vaccines would provide sterilizing immunity kind of like an mmr vaccine well we're obviously seeing that's not true i mean the protection is really against severe illness you do have people that are getting infected who are uh who are vaccinated that is not rare that is that has actually been pretty common and i think you're going to continue to see it uh become more and more common so the idea that because they said you know there were some said if 50 of adults were vaccinated you know you wouldn't see any waves um well you know in florida if you combine the 18 and over with the people that have recovered from cova you're well over 70 percent you're almost 90 percent of seniors you're over 82 83 percent of people 50 and up just on vaccination then you add the people that are there so clearly it's not producing that type of hurt immunity that we had hoped for because the hope was if people got if enough people got it got vaccinated then it would not uh it would kind of fade into the background israel is one of the most vaccinated places on earth and they're having a big big surge this summer as well some of our most back i was just in the villages in sumter county very high vaccination rate very elderly population you know and they've had a wave so that's just what the science is telling us what the data is telling us so forcing people to show papers or do that it's something that is not allowed in florida we didn't think it it made sense but clearly what's happened shows you're not recognizing natural immunity that's anti-science and then if you're trying to act like this is providing sterilizing immunity that's just not what the data tells us yes ma'am so we um you know a lot of the effect i think the county was was really involved in that one and so you know the counties county governments have gotten a lot of karezak money i know they've invested in different types of testing you know we've sent tests to people who've asked for them in terms of some of these these rapid tests uh but there are a lot of ability to get these things at pharmacies and at drug stores also the health department still still do it so so we think that there's a big infrastructure we think our resources and and manpower doing what we're doing now with these sites were filling a void uh that needed to be filled and there's no i mean the hospitals and stuff they're doing it but they're not doing enough that i think really is going to meet the demand so we think the the thing that has the most impact uh to keep people out of the hospital save lives is to really make sure this early treatment is something that people have access to 21 sites it's not easy to run them it's a lot of manpower that goes into it and we've been able to set these up very quickly and it's something that i think has got to be as dr shepky said you know the hope was maybe this thing would just fade into the background at some point but i think we see even with massive numbers of people vaccinated you know you still have uh prevalence you still see it spreading obviously in the southern part of the u.s you know we've just had you know a big a big wave but you're starting to see it increase in other parts of our country and and around the world so you just have to understand it's going to be part of of life and there's ways to protect yourself on the front end there's also ways to treat yourself on the back end and it would involve using the your watch are monoclonals thinking of a different clothing strategy other than these sites well this is one of this is a groundbreaking uh strategy that we've done i think most people have looked at it and said that that's smart and that will help keep people out of the hospital we also of course put in a lot of effort into vaccinating our vulnerable population so if you look we've done 4 million seniors i think 82 percent of people 50 and over which represents the overwhelming majority of hospitalizations and and mortality from this so there's a lot of protection there but obviously the delta waves i mean they really pop much harder than uh than the previous waves because it's much more infectious and so that's why these sites are basically recognizing when you have an airborne pathogen like this okay you're going to have cases so how can you help the people who are going to be fortunately most people just deal with it as a matter of course particularly people who are younger particularly people that are that are in good health but obviously when you start talking about these comorbidities when you start talking about age even even vaccinated people it really does it really does make a difference to be able to have this option and so i think this is helping keep people out of the hospital i think that'll be even more apparent you know as we get into the next next couple of weeks and i think people will see that in the data but i also think had more people known about this from the beginning i definitely think you would have had fewer people end up hospitalized to begin with so now the awareness is is higher uh people understand that this is an option and the availability is is pretty good throughout we have a very big state we have a lot of different population centers i mean there's some states where you have one or two population centers and you can kind of handle everything here it's a little bit different so we've had to go and try to get it into as many areas as we can that'll be as convenient to people as we can this supplements the existing infrastructure but this is really really adding a lot uh to what had been available and there's i'd say the majority of people that come through these sites did not know about the monoclonal antibodies um you know from the beginning uh that's just the reality i think that there was a hesitancy on some of the higher-ups particularly in the federal government to talk a lot about them uh and and i think that that was uh that that was probably a mistake and so now we're not making we want everyone to know what's out there and i think the the results have been very last year encouraging why is it so important to have this type of treatment center well we have it absolutely i mean you know this is open for everybody we want to get in all the different communities obviously you start talking about a place like immokalee yes hospital systems are offering it but you know there may not be as much infrastructure here as there would be in in other parts of the state i mean there's some hospital systems that that crank out a lot of these treatments and that's great but that's not true for every corner of the state and so i think being here will be really a force multiplier it also gets into more of our rural areas even outside of collier county i what is that ken it's uh 90 days yeah so and so if you're not vaccinated and you get the treatment get it we think it'll help you but because they're the antibodies and everything the recommendation is is if you then you do do one of the vaccines you wait 90 days now at the same time it's important to point out this is for people who are have breakthrough cases and are vaccinated or unvaccinated it's not it can be beneficial for both and the reason why that's something important to just point out is because we have the overwhelming majority of our most vulnerable population to covet have been vaccinated uh and they were any of them were vaccinated many many months ago whether that the protection wanes on some of this obviously if they're going to push booster shots the implication is that there's been a waning at least in the protection against infection data comes in on that and from israel other places but bottom line is you know if you're somebody in this vulnerable category if you're vaccinated you still may get infected we're seeing that the brain they call them breakthrough cases but honestly that it kind of implies that they're rare and they're really not they're really not that rare i mean i think almost everyone knows in florida people that are vaccinated who have tested positive now most of them end up with very mild symptoms which is good and i think that that's because you are getting some you know some assistance from from the vaccine however the people who are more elderly the people that have health problems that could help them a lot but they still may need an antibody treatment to make sure that they don't end up hospitalized and we did have you know most of the vaccinated a lot of the vaccinated seniors that would be hospitalized handled it much better than they did last summer when they would go in and so you do see that but you may even be able to keep it keep it short of that so if you are not vaccinated get this treatment wait your 90 days if you are vaccinated but you're vulnerable and you do test positive you know this is something that could um you know could potentially be good for you and then of course uh nursing homes places where there's a lot of people vulnerable if there's somebody that tests positive you can then we can have a strike team go in and help the other folks who may have just been exposed may not have even tested positive and this will actually help in a prospective way as well there so there's a lot to uh to recommend in terms of this and then i just final thing with because dr shepkey mentioned it um you know if you're in an area with high prevalence if you got and you're not vaccinated you got vaccinated today great but the protection does take some time to kick in and so if you're in that window where you and you get infected this is obviously something the monoclonals that you should still have an interest in so we think that this is going to be great i mean if you look throughout on the kind of the western side of florida you know we're here we're in bonita springs we're in englewood we're in uh bradenton pinellas hillsborough pasco uh and then obviously into the panhandle there's a lot so so there's a lot of options for people and we're doing thousands and thousands of these a day and i think if you if you do a thousand people with treatment if they're high risk um 70 percent reduction in hospitalizations that's serious a number of people unfortunately we've seen the admissions you know the emissions aren't as high today as they were a couple weeks ago and obviously they need to go a lot lower but we think this is an important part of getting that done okay thanks everybody we appreciate it thank you thank you thank you did you guys run in individual districts or county wide individual districts okay and uh little bits got my bathroom the one i answered if you're any real information from here oh sure bye sherry<br><!-- wp:image {"id":1776,"sizeSlug":"large","linkDestination":"none"} -->rn<figure class="wp-block-image size-large"><img class="wp-image-1776" src="https://en.videoencontexto.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/LIVE_Florida_Governor_Ron_DeSantis_discusses_COVID19_Early_treatment_saves_lives_2HXzu5-ASAc.jpg" alt="LIVE: Florida Governor Ron DeSantis discusses COVID-19, \'Early treatment saves lives\'" /></figure>rn<!-- /wp:image -->[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

LIVE: Florida Governor Ron DeSantis discusses COVID-19, 'Early treatment saves lives'

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