People who test positive for COVID-19 with a rapid test at the State Center in Baltimore can now be immediately evaluated for the antiviral drug Paxlovid, which has been shown to be effective in relieving severe cases.
The State Center is already a regional state-run hub for testing and vaccinations, and Maryland Department of Health officials decided to add the federally designated “Test to Treat” program to make the prescription more accessible.
It is already available at 50 pharmacies and acute care centers around the state, including CVS MinuteClinics and ExpressCare locations. An online locator hosts the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
State Center location at 300 W. Preston St. will offer on-site testing, evaluation and prescription six days a week. The services and medicine are free.
The treatment option comes as cases have started to rise again in recent weeks. 1,242 cases were added on Monday and the percentage of those tested positive is close to 5%. It is the accepted marker for wide community dissemination. COVID-related hospital admissions across the country remain relatively low at 202, well below the highest level of more than 3,200 in January during the omicron rise.
“Expanding tests for treatment at the State Center is in line with our goal of ensuring that Marylanders have easy access to all the life-saving COVID-19 tools available to keep them safe and protected from serious illness or hospitalization. , “says the State Minister of Health. That’s what Dennis R. Schrader said in a statement. “Test to Treat at State Center is a free one-stop-shop that will further help Maryland remain one of the safest states during the COVID-19 pandemic.”
Officials urge people who think they may have been exposed to COVID-19 to be tested. The antiviral drugs should be administered within five days after the onset of symptoms. Others may be eligible for monoclonal antibody therapy, although it should also begin within five to seven days.
Those who test positive for COVID-19 using a home test can still use the treatment program by completing a online form who questions eligibility or has a telecommunications health or telephone consultation. They get a prescription that they have to fill out at a pharmacy.