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Treatment Options

If you test positive for COVID-19, you may be eligible to receive free and potentially life-saving treatments. The key to effective treatment in most cases is to test early and begin treatment as soon as possible after any symptoms begin.

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What treatments are available

The FDA has authorized emergency use of Paxlovid, from Pfizer and Molnupiravir, from MERCK, as the first oral antiviral (pill) treatments for COVID-19 symptomatic patients.

The FDA has also authorized emergency use of Evusheld, from AstraZeneca, a preventive monoclonal antibody treatment for moderately to severely immunocompromised individuals.

There are several important differences between these treatment options

Frequently Asked Questions Monoclonal Antibody Treatment (mAb) Paxlovid (Pfizer) and Molnupiravir (MERCK) Evusheld (AstraZeneca)
What kind of treatment is it? Injection under the skin (subcutaneous) or intravenous infusion Oral antiviral (pill) Intramuscular injection
Who is eligible to receive it? Adults and adolescents at risk (12 and older) at risk of severe COVID-19 Adults and adolescents (12 and older) at risk of severe COVID-19 (18+ for molnupiravir) High risk individual who do not have COVID-19
When do you receive the treatment? Must receive within 10 days of symptom onset, the sooner the better For best results treatment should begin within 5 days of symptom onset Would receive as a preventive measure for those at high risk of serious illness or death
How long is the treatment? One single IV infusion (approximately one hour) or subcutaneous injection followed by a one-hour observation 5-day treatment regimen Two IM injections given at the same time; benefits last 6 months
How do you get this treatment? Talk to a healthcare provider right away if you test positive for COVID or have been exposed Talk to a healthcare provider right away if you test positive for COVID Providers with eligible, high risk patients will prescribe if appropriate

Monoclonal antibodies are laboratory-made proteins, delivered by subcutaneous or intravenous injection, that help fight the virus that causes COVID-19. mAb administration takes up to an hour, with an observation time afterward.

Oral antiviral treatments are pill regimens, started as soon as possible after the onset of symptoms. These work by interfering with the virus’s ability to replicate. The regimen involves a course of pills over five days.

Evusheld, developed by AstraZeneca, is indicated for moderately to severely immunocompromised individuals who are unlikely to mount an immune response to  any available COVID vaccine. It is also recommended for those rare individuals who have an allergic reaction to all available COVID-19 vaccines.

Although these treatments are not cures, they may lessen the severity of symptoms and help keep high-risk patients out of the hospital. Treatment is available only by referral or prescription. Talk to your health care provider as soon as you test positive for COVID-19 so they can determine the best treatment for you.

View answers to frequently asked questions about COVID-19 Treatment Options.

mAb Treatment Eligibility

You may be eligible to receive monoclonal antibodies if you have recently tested positive for COVID-19, or were recently exposed, and are at a greater risk of developing severe COVID-19 symptoms. Due to fluctuations in supply, health care providers statewide are now prioritizing patients most at risk for serious illness from COVID-19.

mAb Treatment

Supply of mAbs is limited and skilled nursing facilities are being prioritized for distribution of therapeutics. Speak to a provider as soon as possible after you test positive to discuss your care options, which may include prescribed antiviral therapy for individuals at high risk.

While monoclonal antibody treatments are free if you meet the requirements, there may be an administration fee. Please check with your insurance provider.