Palomar Health Provides Antibody Therapy to 200th Patient


Palomar Health infused its 200th patient today (April 27) with monoclonal antibody therapy at the Palomar Health COVID-19 Resource Clinic in downtown Escondido. The therapy is given to high-risk patients who tested positive for COVID-19 within the previous 10 days.

Patients number 199 and 200 are actually a married couple from Fallbrook, Olga and Edward Lugan, who received the infusion simultaneously. Technically Olga’s infusion bag was started last so she’s patient number 200.
Olga said she expects the therapy will keep her symptoms from getting more severe and having to go to the hospital, which only one of the first 198 patients experienced. Most start feeling better the next day and feel normal within three days although a quarantine period is still enforced as patients may still be infectious.

Olga said her symptoms were mild, with body aches and fatigue. She presumes she caught the virus from her husband Edward, who experienced more severe symptoms of high fever, cold and hot flashes and body shakes.
“I feel like the weight of the world is on my shoulders,” Edward said. “I’ve felt unstable all week.”

Edward believes he caught the virus from his friend, who tested positive last week after the two visited a museum together. After testing positive himself at his primary care physician’s office, he was told to come with Olga to receive monoclonal antibody therapy, which has proven to stop the spread of the virus within the body.

Palomar Health Chief Medical Officer Omar Khawaja says the antibodies infused into your body bind to the spike proteins that cause the infection and prevents them from continuing to spread, thereby reducing symptoms in some patients within hours and practically everyone within days.

The Palomar Health Monoclonal Antibody Therapy Clinic is open seven days a week at the old Palomar Health Medical Center in downtown Escondido. Anyone considered high-risk, including everyone over age 65, are eligible for this therapy. Please call 619-685-2500 to discuss your options. The therapy is free of charge.

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