Tallahassee Reports reached out to officials at Capital Regional Medical Center (CRMC) and Tallahassee Memorial Hospital (TMH) seeking the answers to two questions: what are treatments for COVID patients, and what are the most prevalent preexisting conditions for COVID patients under 50?
Trey Blake, MD, MHA, Chief Medical Officer at CRMC provided information on CRMC’s treatment plan for COVID patients. According to Blake, CRMC is using remdesivir for the majority of patients. A common treatment regimen is a mix of Remdesivir, steroids, tocilizumab, and convalescent plasma from COVID survivors. Some patients also receive nebulizer medications, blood thinners, and vitamins.
According to Blake, CRMC is not using hydroxychloroquine at this time.
“The scientific community has concluded that hydroxychloroquine is unlikely to be effective in treating COVID-19 and that the benefits do not outweigh the risks,” he noted.
TMH, on the other hand, has chosen to treat patients with hydroxychloroquine. According to Dean Watson, MD, Chief Integration Officer at TMH, TMH uses hydroxychloroquine based on the Henry Ford Health System study which found that the drug reduced mortality rates for COVID patients.
In addition to hydroxychloroquine, TMH also treats patients with Remdesivir, convalescent plasma, Actemra (tocilizumab), Vitamin C, Vitamin D, zinc, and statins. For patients with pulmonary issues, TMH uses Decadron (dexamethasone) and “proning”—turning the patient over onto their stomach to improve oxygenation.
Blake and Watson also provided information on the most impactful preexisting conditions for COVID patients under 50.
According to Blake, “Preexisting factors that favor poorer outcomes with COVID infections are lung disease (asthma – COPD), heart disease (CHF), chronic kidney disease, cancer, and obesity. These same factors also have negative effects on our infected elderly population.”
According to Watson, the main preexisting conditions are obesity, diabetes, and hypertension.
As of August 1, in Leon County, 80 people were hospitalized for COVID-19. Tallahassee Reports updates Leon County COVID numbers here.