Americans are expressing outrage Friday as they learn former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, a top Republican and top ally of President Donald Trump, is one of a very few people who was treated for COVID-19 with a "VIP" experimental antibody drug therapy, manufactured by Eli Lilly.
Christie, who checked himself into a hospital on October 3 after testing positive for coronavirus was present at the Trump White House's "super-spreader" celebration for Amy Coney Barrett's nomination to the Supreme Court. At least 34 people tested positive after attending the event.
Christie was also part of President Donald Trump's debate prep team. He revealed almost no one wore masks during their sessions. On Thursday he said he learned from his illness and urged all Americans to wear masks, saying the federal government should have treated them as adults.
But S&P Global reports Christie is just "the latest person with VIP status to obtain access to a drug out of reach for most Americans," noting that "bioethicists have raised concerns about the standards Lilly and Regeneron are using to provide access to the limited doses of their experimental antibody treatments."
Christie was treated with Eli Lilly and Co.'s experimental antibody treatment, along with Gilead Sciences Inc.'s antiviral remdesivir, an Ebola drug.
"Lilly declined to comment specifically on how Christie obtained access to the company's experimental antibody treatment and what criteria he met to receive the therapy."
Over eight million Americans have been infected with coronavirus. On Thursday the US recorded 66,129 new COVID-19 cases. Nearly 220,000 have died already. That number is growing by the minute.
Many on social media, upon learning that Christie was treated with a drug almost no one else has access to, expressed anger – over his irresponsible behavior and that his status, access to the President, access to the best health care, and privilege allow him to benefit while Americans who are working hard to protect themselves and their families, yet contract COVID-19 are still dying.
@maggiemfox @ron_fournier Did Christie's insurance pay for the antibody treatment or was is provided by Eli Lilly for free???— U.N. Owen (@U.N. Owen)1602816029.0
buried in this story > former NJ gov Chris Christie was given Eli Lilly experimental antibody treatment > was he i… https://t.co/2qyqLdD4FQ— Antonio Regalado (@Antonio Regalado)1602849087.0
@GovChristie @GMA Like Trump, white privilege & power saved you. You continue to support a man who would’ve said t… https://t.co/fnRbcrF4b6— AC (@AC)1602858346.0
@ScottGottliebMD @SquawkCNBC Apparently Christie got Lilly's antibody cocktail. Wow. It's one thing for POTUS to ge… https://t.co/BQKHbm4SX2— Ivan the K™ (@Ivan the K™)1602845579.0
BREAKING—Chris Christie was not only hospitalized, but he was in the ICU for 7-days... and he got special VIP acces… https://t.co/NVpHA4tWsn— Eric Feigl-Ding (@Eric Feigl-Ding)1602805211.0
3) As both a human being and an epidemiologist—it makes me sick to see this insider privilege and injustice. Christ… https://t.co/xiH0sLFOH3— Eric Feigl-Ding (@Eric Feigl-Ding)1602812524.0
@rodimusprime @MzYun Absolutely! Christie is a walking collection of comorbidities. The difference in outcomes is a… https://t.co/lfY99gqQ2M— Bus Rules🚍 (@Bus Rules🚍)1602856609.0
Chris Christie: 🙄When you have 7 days in isolation in #ICU you have time to do a lot of thinking 🙄Like Trump, he… https://t.co/kr1CdjG29V— Laurel Coons 🧬🧬🧬 (@Laurel Coons 🧬🧬🧬)1602836241.0
@maggieNYT @GovChristie Chris Christie ALSO got the experimental antibody treatment. Wow! If Christie had fallen s… https://t.co/I7H1A9XKra— Lia'sGrandma (@Lia'sGrandma)1602820883.0
@Laurie_Garrett How does Christie--a person who holds no office and performs no useful activity--qualify for an exp… https://t.co/RdxQjk9SV5— Richard H. Ebright (@Richard H. Ebright)1602811437.0
So Trump and Chris Christie both received REGN-COV2 experimental antibody treatment for COVID. How many of you, y… https://t.co/2d1JWznMHu— 🐾Angie K 💙🔬🧫 (@🐾Angie K 💙🔬🧫)1602819383.0
Big shock...Chris Christie spent 7 days in the ICU with COVID and received both remdesivir and the Eli Lilly experi… https://t.co/OAjOVBaYb4— Icculus The Brave (@Icculus The Brave)1602816921.0
Like Trump, Christie was treated w a drug no normal person could get “He was treated with a combination of blood… https://t.co/oFT4wDcNnh— Drogon (@Drogon)1602807604.0
So, another "VIP" who got access to limited doses of an experimental antibody drug - this time $LLY? So why did… https://t.co/Rp60iqh1Nn— Donna Young (@Donna Young)1602804433.0
@abbydphillip "Christie was also treated with an experimental antibody cocktail and remdesivir" 8 MILLION American… https://t.co/IGNazxOINf— NotATweeter16 (@NotATweeter16)1602804430.0
@Salacia_sea @jimsciutto What about the rest of it? That every American citizen should have access to the treatment… https://t.co/I2h0STCnjG— !broken need a fix🇺🇸 (@!broken need a fix🇺🇸)1602858478.0