Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) blamed the Biden administration for COVID-19 woes in his state while accusing other state leaders of allowing “hysteria” to reign as they encourage mitigation measures against the virus that he claimed had little basis in sound science.
“In terms of Florida, you look what’s going on in other states, they’re letting hysteria drive them to doing really damaging things. We thought that people had learned,” DeSantis said during his first news conference in weeks on Monday after record-setting COVID-19 numbers spread across the state last month. “They’re closing schools, they’re doing things that should not be done. That is not the way you deal with this.”
DeSantis, who has routinely promoted monoclonal antibodies since former President Donald Trump credited the treatment for his recovery, said his administration was worried about dwindling supplies, even as several of the approved treatments appear to be less effective in fighting off Omicron.
“We were concerned about what was happening with the taking back of the supply—even more so than has been—of monoclonal antibodies,” DeSantis said. “It’s something that we actually have seen applied with Omicron patients and we have seen symptoms resolved.”
The treatments had become a critical weapon in warding off hospitalization in high-risk infections, but some hospitals in recent weeks had begun cutting back the treatments as growing evidence suggested that two of the three monoclonal antibody treatments they had relied on to provide relief against past variants, do not offer the same shield against severe illness against the highly contagious new Omicron strain.
DeSantis claimed on Monday that the administration’s initial decision to pause shipments of Regeneron and the Eli Lilly treatments, had been based on what he called “some preliminary study” suggesting that they might not be as effective against Omicron.
“But Omicron isn’t the only variant out there,” he said.
Last week, the state’s Surgeon General Dr. Joseph Ladapo issued a letter that ripped the Department of Health and Human Services for…