On Thursday, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis said he was “deeply concerned” about President Joe Biden’s decision to restrict the distribution of monoclonal antibodies to states amid an increase in COVID-19 cases, leading to a rise in demand for treatment in mostly Southern states.
Late last week, Biden announced that the administration would increase shipments by 50% for the month of September.
But earlier this week, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced it would seize control of the COVID-19 treatment supply nationwide and control its distribution.
I will fight like hell to overcome Biden’s brutal decision to drastically reduce life-saving monoclonal antibody treatments for Floridians. We have seen a sharp drop in hospital admissions due to early treatment efforts. It is wrong to punish Florida for its partisan bitterness. pic.twitter.com/24APj0r50K
— Ron DeSantis (@GovRonDeSantis) September 17, 2021
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Fighting COVID in the Sunshine State
Immediately after the announcement that HHS would monitor the supply of monoclonal antibodies, another statement came that the supply used in Florida would be reduced by 50%.
DeSantis explained, “So this is a dramatic reduction, and I’d say it’s doubly problematic because what Shane Strum and people in Tampa General and these other hospital systems that have been doing this are not getting from the state.”
DeSantis went on to say that of the reduced amount given to the state, anyone providing monoclonal antibody treatment in Florida, including hospitals, should get their supply from the state.
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The governor added that he will “work like hell to make sure” Florida can “overcome the obstacles that HHS and the Biden administration” pose not only for Florida, but other states as well. He continued: “There will be a huge disruption and patients will suffer because of this.”
DeSantis also said he has spoken with executives at GlaxoSmithKline, one of the monoclonal antibody manufacturers, and he believes Florida can order the treatment directly from them.
The Biden admin hasn’t made a single federal purchase from Glaxo since their monoclonal antibody product was approved in May…what are the chances of them landing an exclusive deal while DeSantis negotiates its own bulk purchase just to keep Florida from getting it?
— Phil Kerpen (@kerpen) September 17, 2021
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Are there any ulterior motives?
Also on Thursday, HHS issued a statement that read in part:
“HHS determines the amount of product each state and territory receives each week. State and territorial health departments will then identify locations that will receive the product and how much. This system will help maintain an equitable distribution, both geographically and temporally, across the country, providing states and territories with a consistent, fairly distributed supply in the coming weeks.”
According to US News & World Report, just seven states, Florida, Texas, Mississippi, Tennessee, Alabama, Georgia and Louisiana account for about 70% of the manufacturer’s orders.
However, with the exception of Louisiana, all of these states have something in common.
They all have Republican governors.
At a news conference on Thursday, President Biden attacked DeSantis and Texas Governor Greg Abbott, claiming they were undermining “the life-saving requirements” touted by his administration.
Biden also said: “This is the worst form of politics because it endangers the lives of citizens of their states, especially children, and I refuse to give in to it.”
In a tweet, Donald Trump Jr. also that Biden’s actions could be the result of political payback: “Americans will die because of Biden’s despicable decision to punish his political enemies in red states by limiting their ability to secure life-saving monoclonal antibody treatments to anyone who needs them.” Their blood is right on Joe’s hands.”
Americans will die because of Biden’s despicable decision to punish his political enemies in red states by limiting their ability to obtain life-saving monoclonal antibody treatments for anyone who needs them.
Their blood is right on Joe’s hands.
— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) September 16, 2021
sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) also accused Biden and his administration of playing politics with the lives of Floridians. “Antibody treatments are not a substitute for vaccines, but they have prevented thousands of hospitalizations, including breakthrough cases. Now, in a move that smells of partisan retaliation against states like Florida, the Biden administration is rationing these treatments.”
Antibody treatments are not a substitute for vaccines
But they have prevented thousands of hospital admissions, including breakthrough cases
Now, in a move that smells of partisan retaliation against states like Florida, the Biden administration is rationing these treatments
— Marco Rubio (@marcorubio) September 16, 2021
RELATED: CNN’s Don Lemon Calls Unvaccinated ‘Stupid’ — ‘Leave Them Behind’
History between Biden and DeSantis
The clap battle between Ron DeSantis and Joe Biden has been an ongoing battle since Biden suggested that any governors who oppose restrictive COVID rules should “get out of the way.”
DeSantis had none of it, and immediately attacked Biden, citing his bad job on the southern border, and declaring that he would do what he had to do to keep Floridians safe.
Later, when asked about DeSantis’ statements, Biden grinned and said, “Governor who?” Joe Biden has continued to make comments about GOP governors criticizing their handling of COVID in their respective states.
DeSantis called him again.
This time, we criticized him for the chaos of the withdrawal in Afghanistan: “If he spent a little less time talking about Florida and more time working as Commander in Chief, we might not have 13 soldiers killed in action in Afghanistan because of his incompetence and dereliction of duty.”
The Biden HHS has found that states like FL and TX, with effective GOP governors, have done well with monoclonal antibody therapies.
Therefore, the Biden HHS has decided that it will federalize access to monoclonal antibodies, because “equity.”https://t.co/cRgzv4iEab
— Nan Hayworth, MD (@NanHayworth) September 15, 2021
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