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Mohave County receives supply of Remdesivir to treat COVID-19

Mohave County Public Health Director Denise Burley talks to the Mohave County Commissioners on Tuesday, May 26. (Photo by Agata Popeda/Kingman Miner)

Mohave County Public Health Director Denise Burley talks to the Mohave County Commissioners on Tuesday, May 26. (Photo by Agata Popeda/Kingman Miner)

KINGMAN – Mohave County Department of Public Health has received 160 vials of Remdesivir that can be used to treat COVID-positive patients who are in intensive care, the county’s chief health officer Denise Burley told the Mohave County Board of Supervisors Tuesday, May 26.

Remdesivir, developed by Gilead Sciences, has been authorized for emergency use in the U.S. Early results show it may shorten the time it takes to recover from COVID-19.

“We have developed a process in which the hospitals can request those dosages from us,” Burley said. “We will deliver it to the hospital upon request.”

She specified that this drug, as approved, is designed for ICU patients only.

Remdesivir was also approved for patients with severe symptoms in the U.K. and Japan. The drug is administered by injection. It was originally developed to fight Ebola.

MCDPH also received 500 COVID-19 test kits this Saturday, May 23 from the state. They are regular test kits, not the rapid test kits, of which a shipment for the county also recently arrived.

The county has about 200 rapid test kits, Burley said. However, she reminded the supervisors that rapid tests that result negative have to be repeated with the use of a normal test kit due to the high percentage (40%) of false negatives.

District 3 Supervisor Buster Johnson inquired where the newly arrived test kits will go, and Burley replied that it’s up to the county to decide.

“These tests can go to private providers,” Burley said. “They can go out to the hospitals. It’s for both our [county’s] use and for a distribution within the community.”

“Can the hospital use them for elective surgeries,” asked Johnson, who previously said local hospitals may be saving testing supplies to use for profitable elective surgeries.

“They can but the hospitals have enough tests for their internal use,” Burley said. “That includes elective surgeries, staff and all hospital admits.”

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