New drug therapy to help those at risk from COVID offered in Peterborough

A new drug therapy helping those at highest risk from COVID infection has been offered to Peterborough patients.

Wednesday, 12th January 2022, 3:32 pm
Kelly Irvine, the first patient in the Covid Medicine Delivery Unit, receives her infusion overseen by Deputy Charge Nurse Binu Kunjukunju

The Covid Medicine Delivery Unit (CMDU) started running at the City Care Centre, Peterborough, on Thursday, December 23 administering Sotrovimab, a new therapy which had only been approved for use days earlier.

The clinic provides a one-off 50ml infusion of antibodies to clinically-vulnerable patients who have tested positive for Covid-19 and are within the first five days of infection.

The first patient - Kelly Irvine, from Peakirk, was able to enjoy a symptom free Christmas as a result of the new treatment.

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Kelly (32) is classed as a more vulnerable patient as she has a form of arthritis and takes immunosuppressants to combat the condition.

She said: “My husband tested positive a few days before me and I started to get a sore throat and a feeling similar to a cold. There is always a worry I could become more poorly due to my condition so I was relieved to know I could have this treatment. The opening of the clinic was really good timing for me.

“The infusion was quick and the staff in the clinic were really friendly. By the second day post infusion I felt back to normal and have been fine since. For people with health issues that make them more vulnerable, it is great to have this as a treatment option.”

Dr Kanchan Rege, Chief Medical Officer at North West Anglia NHS Foundation Trust, which runs Peterborough City, Hinchingbrooke and Stamford Hospitals, said: “At the time we set up our clinic, it was the only one to do so in Cambridgeshire. Cambridge University Hospitals is now assisting us, but it has been a real coup for us to commence the clinic and support some of our most vulnerable patients.

“The type of patients who are benefitting from this therapy include those on immunosuppressants or chemotherapy, in other words, people who require extra help to defend themselves against Covid-19.

“While this is a relatively small patient group, it is really important for us to be able to help them avoid developing complications and needing admission to hospital.

“I’d like to thank all the team involved in setting up the clinic at a time when our hospitals have also been under pressure.”

The service has now switched to be delivered from Hinchingbrooke Hospital.