St. Mary Medical Center Receives COVID-19 Treatment Drug

Exteriors of St Mary Medical Center. Photo courtesy St. Mary.

St. Mary Medical Center in Langhorne is one of two hospitals in Bucks County to receive Remdesivir to treat COVID-19 patients.

The federal government shipped 1200 doses of the antiviral drug to the state Department of Health Tuesday. The department then distributed these doses to 51 hospitals throughout the commonwealth.

Newly released data shows St. Mary Medical Center is treating an average of 68 patients with COVID-19 over a recent 7 day period, and six are on ventilators. Based on these numbers, the hospital received 36 doses of remdesivir.

St. Mary Medical Center is one of four hospitals under Trinity Health Mid-Atlantic to get remdesivir. Trinity Health Mid-Atlantic Senior Vice President and Chief Clinical Officer Sharon Carney, MD, said they are “grateful” for the opportunity to use it on patients.

“We are happy we can now provide this treatment to patients most in need to help them overcome this illness,” said Carney.

Remdesivir has received emergency use authorization from the Food and Drug Administration. A clinical trial showed it could shorten the recovery time in some people.

“The department is working to give our hospitals every opportunity to treat patients with COVID-19,” said Secretary of Health Dr. Rachel Levine. “It is important to note that there is limited information on the safety and effectiveness of using remdesivir to treat people in the hospital with COVID-19.”

In a statement Wednesday, the Department of Health explained how remdesivir works to fight coronavirus.

“Remdesivir is given to a patient through an IV once per day for up to 10 days, depending on how critically ill the patient is. According to the FDA, remdesivir may help decrease the amount of coronavirus in your body, which may help you get better faster.”

The state Department of Health used a mathematical formula to determine which hospitals received doses and how many. In short, hospitals with more coronavirus patients and more patients on ventilators received more doses. The full formula and a more in depth explanation is available here.

Doylestown Hospital is the only other hospital in Bucks to receive the drug.