As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, patients with autoimmune disorders who depend on caregiver-administered drugs face serious challenges to their safety, according to a recent analysis published by Avalere Health. Many patients who need to visit a clinical site to receive treatment for autoimmune disorders are confronted with a difficult choice: go out in public to face the danger of a virulent, fast-spreading pandemic for which they are at acute risk, or stay home and go without their medication.
“[Immunocompromised] patients are experiencing this maybe more acutely than any of us,” Lance Grady, a managing director at Avalere and one of the authors of the white paper, tells AIS Health. “For a patient to have to sit in their home and have a telehealth engagement with their provider, that’s a new experience. Then for a patient to go through a workup with their provider and understand what other therapeutic alternatives might be available, or what the next steps are in care — typically these are interventions that require a patient to ambulate. A patient would then have to say, ‘Is it safe for me to go out there?’”