Fitzpatrick Announces Additional Distribution of Remdesivir to PA, Continues Call for Transparency in Distribution
LANGHORNE, PA—Last night, the office of Congressman Brian Fitzpatrick (PA-01) was informed by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) that the agency has committed an additional 200 cases of Remdesivir to be allocated to Pennsylvania from the federal stockpile. According to HHS, the delivery of the 200 cases will be sent to the state later this week, and going forward, HHS plans on allocating additional amounts each week which will be based on available supply and data reported.
Last Thursday, Fitzpatrick wrote to HHS and Secretary Alex Azar asking for full transparency in the distribution of the potentially life-saving drug, Remdesivir. On Saturday, Fitzpatrick was advised that in the first 6 weeks of their scheduled distribution, HHS only committed to sending the Commonwealth 30 cases. After numerous conversations with HHS, the department reversed course and committed an additional 200 cases with the potential of sending additional cases on a weekly basis.
On Tuesday, Fitzpatrick joined Bucks and Montgomery Commissioners, State Senators, and State Representatives in sending a letter to the Pennsylvania Department of Health (DOH) asking for transparency and pushing for Buck and Montgomery County hospitals to have access to the clinical drug.
“The commitment of an additional 200 cases is a big step in the right direction to combatting this pandemic and getting our hospitals and patients the resources they need, but this alone will not be the end-all-be-all. I must stress that this is a clinical drug that has shown to speed up the rate of recovery but it’s not the cure,” said Fitzpatrick. “As we fight to combat this virus, the distribution process must be more transparent. I applaud Secretary Levine for adopting a transparent system for the initial distribution of the drug and thank all the elected officials that joined with me to push for transparency. As we work to address this issue on the federal side, my staff and I will continue to have future conversations with HHS on the distribution process and will continue to work to ensure the men and women on the frontlines have the tools they need to save lives.”
To date, 51 hospitals in the Commonwealth have received Remdesivir from the state stockpile including St. Mary’s Medical Center, Doylestown Hospital, and Jefferson Health Abington-Lansdale. DOH based its allocation on COVID-19 patients that a particular hospital had over a one week span, how severely ill those patients were, and whether they needed ventilators.