Health Canada approves Bamlanivimab


Sarah Peddie

Bamlanivimab, made by Eli Lilly Canada Inc, is a monocolonal antobody to the SARS COV2 spike protein. Health Canada has approved the drug for Covid-19 treatment drug even though it was rejected by the Canadian province of British Columbia. It was engineered by a Vancouver biotech company. Despite its local invention, and approval by Health Canada, British Columbia still rejects its emergency authorisation.


Bamlanivimab made by ELi Lily was given emergency approval as a treatment for coronavirus in the US and Canada back in November 2020. 

It is administered using a three-hour intravenous infusion and is aimed at people who are at risk developing severe Covid-19 symptoms and getting respirated. 

What is an intravenous infusion?

An intravenous infusion is the administration of fluids into a vein by a steel needle or plastic catheter.

The British Columbia Ministry of Health rejected the use of the drug in their province due to the lack of safety data and capacity for blood infusions to allow use of bamlanivimab. B.C. Ministry of Health spokesperson Devon Smith said: “Bamlanivimab has little published evidence of clinical benefit and very limited safety data.

Surgical operation in hospital operating room.

“The required resources to administer outpatient infusions for individuals with confirmed COVID-19 at the peak of their infectivity, while being able to monitor and manage infusion reactions, is not presently available.

“Concentrating COVID-19 patients at established Emergency Departments or medical day units to receive infusions is not advised. Should further evidence become available that more strongly supports clinical benefit, the role of bamlanivimab will be reassessed.”

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