Dr Kevin Winthrop answers COVID questions and advocates for "hit the pause button, lay low and exercise". We discuss the utility of baricitinib, losartan, COVID testing, Next Success and who to listen to.
In the midst of a global pandemic of the 2019 Novel coronavirus acute respiratory disease (COVID-19), a small handful of Rheumatologists gathered on social media to collectively grapple with the impact of this virus on vulnerable populations with rheumatic disease.
As they say, necessity is the mother of invention. After years of bemoaning the challenges of telemedicine, our rheumatology clinic transition entirely to a remote clinic in the space of a week. One of the few good things to come out of this crisis is that we may learn that in-person visits are not as critical as we thought, which may in turn help our specialty’s access issues.
Ready for telemedicine/telerheumatology?
Once you and your patient agree on a virtual visit, the following suggestions may help facilitate the interaction. If you have the ability and the capacity, record the visit.
As the highly virulent SARS-CoV-2 spreads over the world, uncertainty and fear for our patients with rheumatic diseases mount.
As of March 17, 2020 over 183,000* cases of Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) have been recorded, with the majority in China and Europe, but that may be the tip of the iceberg. Many more cases likely exist that are undetected due to shortages in testing supplies.
We are in the early stages of trying to limit the morbid and mortal consequences of the corona virus pandemic of 2020. Not surprisingly, the recommendations designed to limit exposure and damage continually highlight the fact that the elderly and immunosuppressed may be amongst the most severely affected should they become infected with this virus.
This has led to a great deal of uncertainty by patients and providers about how rheumatic diseases and their treatments need to be specifically addressed.