Gov. Abbott announced Friday that the Texas Department of State Health Services and the Texas Division of Emergency Management are launching nine COVID-19 antibody infusion centers throughout the state.
According to Abbott's office, the first infusion center, located in San Antonio, has served over 100 Texans since opening on Tuesday.
An infusion center in Corpus Christi began operations Friday morning at the RMB Fairgrounds, Abbott's office said.
An infusion center in Austin will launch Monday at the Travis County Expo Center, and DSHS is working with local officials to launch similar operations in Conroe, Dallas-Fort Worth, and Laredo in the coming days.
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TDEM will also launch a regional infusion center for the Rio Grande Valley on Saturday in Harlingen, and the department expanded operations at the existing regional infusion center in Lubbock this past week.
According to Abbott's office, more infusion centers will be launched throughout the state as additional needs are identified based on factors like COVID-19 case data and existing resources.
"Antibody infusion centers play an integral role in our efforts to combat COVID-19 because they help prevent hospitalizations and ensure that resources are available to treat the most severe cases of this virus," Abbott said. "Thank you to our local partners for working with the State of Texas to launch these centers across Texas. We will continue to work with local leaders to ensure our communities have the support they need to keep Texans safe and healthy."
These infusion centers are equipped with Regeneron's monoclonal antibodies and will treat COVID-19 patients who do not need hospitalization using therapeutic drugs that can prevent their conditions from getting worse, Abbott's office said.
Abbott's office also said that these centers also help increase bed capacity in hospitals so that resources are available for a greater number of ill patients.
Patients must meet certain criteria and have a referral from a doctor.
According to Abbott's office, the state deployed similar measures in early 2021 to communities across Texas.