SARS-CoV-2 Monoclonal Antibodies in Children: Ethical Considerations

Ian D. Wolfe*, Sameer J. Patel

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalComment/debatepeer-review


The use of monoclonal antibodies in children with certain conditions and at high risk for severe COVID-19 has been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration under the Emergency Use Authorization mechanism of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act. No data on the tolerability or efficacy of these therapies in persons <18 years of age are available; there is risk. Whether they will work is unknown, but they could. A disproportionate number of these children who meet the criteria for treatment with mAbs are from communities of black, Native American, and other race. How should health systems, hospitals, and clinicians balance the tensions between being seen as experimenting with an untested drug as opposed to withholding a potentially life-saving treatment? This article identifies, analyzes, and makes recommendations on the methods by which health systems, hospitals, and individual clinicians can ethically balance these tensions.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)e157-e162
JournalClinical Therapeutics
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2021


  • COVID-19
  • MAbs
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • children and adolescents
  • ethics
  • monoclonal antibodies
  • pediatrics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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