White House press secretary Jen Psaki told reporters in a Tuesday press briefing that Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, a Republican, was advocating the use of monoclonal antibody treatments that ''do not work against omicron,'' according to Insider.
''Well, let's just take a step back here just to realize how crazy this is,'' Psaki said. ''These treatments — the ones that they are fighting over, that the governor's fighting over — do not work against omicron, and they have side effects. That is what the scientists are saying.''
Psaki added that the administration had sent Florida 71,000 doses of antiviral treatments approved by the Food and Drug Administration against the delta abd omicron variants.
The comments from Psaki come after the FDA restricted the bamlanivimab and etesevimab (administered together) and REGEN-COV treatments DeSantis has been pushing in his state, citing inefficacy against the COVID-19 omicron variant.
''[The] data show these treatments are highly unlikely to be active against the omicron variant, which is circulating at a very high frequency throughout the United States, these treatments are not authorized for use in any U.S. states, territories, and jurisdictions at this time,'' a Monday press briefing read.
DeSantis demanded that the FDA reverse the decision in a statement on Monday.
''Without a shred of clinical data to support this action, [President Joe] Biden has forced trained medical professionals to choose between treating their patients or breaking the law,'' DeSantis said.
''This indefensible edict takes treatment out of the hands of medical professionals and will cost some Americans their lives. There are real-world implications to Biden's medical authoritarianism — Americans' access to treatments is now subject to the whims of a failing president.''
The Florida Department of Health posted to Twitter that they would close all the monoclonal antibody treatment sites in light of the new FDA rule.
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