October 16, 2020

Around the nation: FDA OKs first Ebola treatment

Daily Briefing

    FDA on Wednesday approved Regeneron Pharmaceuticals' Inmazeb, an antibody cocktail, to treat adults and children with the deadliest-known strain of the Ebola virus, in today's bite-sized hospital and health industry news from Maryland and New York.

    • Maryland: FDA on Wednesday approved Regeneron Pharmaceuticals' Inmazeb, an antibody cocktail, to treat adults and children with the deadliest-known strain of the Ebola virus, making Inmazeb the first drug that the agency has approved to treat Ebola. FDA said it based its approval on data from a clinical trial involving 382 adults and children with confirmed Zaire ebolavirus infections in the Democratic Republic of the Congo during the country's Ebola outbreak in 2018 and 2019. The data showed 33.8% of participants who received Inmazeb died after 28 days, compared with 51% of the 153 participants who were in a control group (Gonzalez, Axios, 10/14; Branswell, STAT News, 10/14; Johnson, Associated Press, 10/15; FDA release, 10/14).

    • Maryland: CMS on Wednesday announced that Medicare fee-for-service plans will cover an additional 11 telehealth services amid HHS' declared public health emergency for America's coronavirus epidemic. CMS said the newly covered services include certain neurostimulator analysis and programming services, as well as certain cardiac and pulmonary rehabilitation services. The additions mean Medicare is now covering a total of 144 telehealth services during the public health emergency (King, FierceHealthcare, 10/14; Commins, HealthcareLeaders Media, 10/14; CMS release, 10/14).

    • New York: Catholic Health (CH) is planning to build a new hospital, named Lockport Memorial, in Lockport, New York. CH expects to begin construction on the one-story, 37,000-square-foot facility in 2021 and complete the project in 2023. CH said the new facility will help preserve hospital care in Lockport, as the city's Eastern Niagara Hospital has filed for bankruptcy and signed a management agreement with CH. "This is a great day for the greater Lockport community," Eastern Niagara Hospital President Ann McCaffrey said. "We are so pleased to join with [CH]—a partner that is innovative and visionary, fully committed to our community, and willing to make a significant investment in building a new hospital" (Paavola, Becker's Hospital Review, 10/13).

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