Rep. Chip Roy (TX-21) sent a letter to Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra last week demanding answers about why department’s rationing of monoclonal antibody (mAb) treatments for COVID has left Texans without potential treatment against the latest COVID strain. The letter comes after the state of Texas’ treatment sites ran out sotrovimab — the only authorized mAb treatment that appears to be effective against the Omicron variant.
“The decisions your Department made surrounding mAb treatment supply chain changes caused immediate disruptions to mAb treatment access, and disruptions have only gotten worse as COVID-19 has continued to circulate through our communities,” the letter explains. “The fallout of these decisions could prove fatal. This, while your Department has not even at a minimum been transparent about the manufacturing capabilities and supply levels of various mAb treatments whilst denying commercial purchase to block separate recourse to a life-or-death situation.”
“In Texas, including in Austin, El Paso, Fort Worth, San Antonio and the Houston area, sites have completely run out of Sotrovimab and have no choice but to wait without recourse because your Department has taken full control of the supply chain,” the letter explains.
“As you know, I have previously sent multiple inquiry letters to your Department due to foreseeable consequences of supply and access issues for mAb treatments due to your Department’s changes,” the letter explains. “On September 13, 2021 I sent your Department a letter inquiring about changes made to the acquisition and distribution of mAb treatments – a change that moved the entire mAb supply chain into the control of HHS. I also sent a letter on November 16, 2021 with colleagues inquiring about troubling reports of individuals being turned away from treatment due to racial biases. These inquiries have gone unanswered.”
“It is essential your Department releases restrictions to purchasing mAb treatments for all variants,” the congressman concludes.