OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – As COVID-19 cases begin to climb across the country once again, doctors in Oklahoma are encouraging residents to pay close attention to their health.
The Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center showed a seven-day average of 119,725 cases as of Saturday.
Despite the rising infection rate, COVID-related deaths were down from last year, a sign of increased immunity through vaccines and prior infections, along with wider availability of treatments.
As cases climb, doctors say that many Americans are turning to at-home tests.
“Of course there’s a lot of at-home testing now. We have antigen testing and PCR testing. Based on the predominant variant, you’re going to have varying levels of accuracy with those tests,” said Dr. David Chansolme, INTEGRIS Health Medical Director of Infection Prevention.
Dr. Chansolme says if you take an at-home test and get a positive result, you should immediately contact your primary care physician.
“There is a lot of the new oral medication available. The monoclonal antibody infusions do not work very well against this. Although that’s been very successful for us in previous iterations of the COVID pandemic and of the circulating variants, it is not as successful right now against the current omicron variants. So we’re actually not offering monoclonal antibody infusions,” he said.
Although antibody infusions are not a current treatment, Chansolme says that there are other treatments available.
“There is an oral medication that some people are eligible for, so please, please, please contact your primary care doctor. It only works if you take it early. If it’s been more than five days since you started having symptoms, it will not work,” he said.