Communicator’s Tip Sheet for COVID-19 Vaccination from the National Institutes of Health
NIH has just release their communicator’s tip sheet which showcases important considerations and “dos and don’ts” when speaking to individuals getting the vaccine.
NOF Joins COVID-19 Vaccine Education and Equity Project
NOF is one of 64 organizations that has joined the COVID-19 Vaccine Education and Equity Project being led by the Alliance for Aging Research, Healthy Women and the National Caucus and Center on Black Aging.
This project is guided by a core belief that approval and dissemination of any and all COVID-19 vaccines must be based on:
- Robust clinical trials that include diverse patient populations
- Public disclosure of results from Phase 3 clinical trials, in accordance with FDA guidance
- Authorization and subsequent approval based on evidence generated from clinical trials and well-established review processes at FDA
- Transparent and ongoing post-marketing safety surveillance.
Recognizing the need for open dialogue, engagement and effective communication, this project aims to address skepticism around vaccines that exists in many communities. Additionally, building confidence in the process and the science is key for approved vaccines to contribute to addressing health inequities that exist generally and – in this case — specifically with respect to COVID-19. With this top-of-mind, www.covidvaccineproject.org was launched to share information created to help educate a variety of critical audiences about the COVID-19 vaccines.
To learn more and for details on how organizations and industry partners can get involved, click here.
Bone Health During COVID-19: Important Information for Patients and Caregivers
On June 10, NOF’s Board President and Chief Medical Officer reviewed important information via a live webinar about how to manage your bone health during the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. NOF recently surveyed its patient and caregiver community to ask about access to care, availability of medication/treatment, and other healthcare concerns. Our experts shared highlights from the survey and responded to some questions and concerns raised during a Q&A session at the end.
Ask the Expert: Dr. Lewiecki Shares Invaluable Insight on Best Telemedicine Practices During the Pandemic
E. Michael Lewiecki, MD
Director, New Mexico Clinical Research & Osteoporosis Center
Director, Bone Health TeleECHO
Vice President, Board of Trustees, National Osteoporosis Foundation
The COVID-19 pandemic and mandated social distancing have forced healthcare providers to quickly determine how to use technology to provide patient care. A recent NOF survey revealed that more than 60 percent of healthcare providers are offering telemedicine visits by phone or videoconference. Since March 2020, more than one third (36%) of patient respondents have participated in technology-driven appointments. Overall, the feedback has been very positive with 77 percent indicating that their telemedicine appt was easy, convenient, a good quality visit and safe. NOF’s Dr. Lewiecki shares excellent insight and perspective on what patients can expect from this new form of healthcare.
Click here to read the full interview.
Temporary Prolia® (denosumab) Injection, for subcutaneous use, Administration by Patient or Caregiver During COVID-19 Public Health Emergency
Dear Health Care Provider:
Following consultation with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Amgen is issuing this letter to provide you with safety information regarding temporary administration of Prolia during the COVID-19 pandemic. Prolia is intended for multiple osteoporosis indications.
The current U.S. prescribing information states that Prolia (denosumab) should be administered by a healthcare provider. At this time, self-administration of Prolia is not approved in the United States. However, administration by healthcare providers may be a challenge in the context of the current COVID-19 pandemic. FDA has informed Amgen that it does not intend to object to our dissemination of this letter or the accompanying temporary Instructions for Use and video only for the duration of the COVID-19 public health emergency declared by the Secretary of Health and Human Services on January 31, 2020.
Joint Guidance on Osteoporosis Management in the Era of COVID-19 from the American Society for Bone and Mineral Research (ASBMR), American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (AACE), Endocrine Society, European Calcified Tissue Society (ECTS) and National Osteoporosis Foundation (NOF)
The guidance has been created to assist clinicians in the management of patients with osteoporosis in the era of COVID-19. The current pandemic has necessitated the implementation of social distancing strategies that have the potential to disrupt the medical care of patients with osteoporosis. We acknowledge that there is a paucity of data to provide clear guidance. Thus the below recommendations are based primarily on expert opinion.
Coalition of Bone Health Experts Issues Joint Guidance on Osteoporosis Management in the COVID-19 Era
Organizations responding to “paucity of data” to provide clear guidance for healthcare professionals treating millions of osteoporosis patients
WASHINGTON, D.C. – (7 May 2020) – The current COVID-19 global pandemic has necessitated the implementation of social distancing strategies that have the potential to disrupt the medical care of patients with osteoporosis.
In response to this disruption, the American Society for Bone and Mineral Research (ASBMR), American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (AACE), Endocrine Society, European Calcified Tissue Society (ECTS) and the National Osteoporosis Foundation (NOF) today released guidance to help healthcare professionals treating osteoporosis patients in the era of COVID-19.
COVID-19 and Osteoporosis Treatment: Webinar for Healthcare Professionals
This webinar featured an expert panel that reviewed what new rules and legislation mean for clinicians caring for osteoporosis patients.
Due to the unprecedented healthcare crisis caused by the respiratory illness brought on by the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19), Congress and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) have been releasing new resources and relaxing many rules to allow for flexibility in treating patients during this crisis period. This new information includes updates on telemedicine, reimbursement and delivery of treatment.
This webinar also called upon providers in all clinical settings to share how they have been adapting their practices during this crisis and what challenges they are encountering in their ability to provide the best patient care and keep their business intact.
Andrea J. Singer, MD, FACP, CCD, NOF Chief Medical Officer; Director, Women’s Primary Care, Director, Bone Densitometry Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, MedStar Georgetown University Hospital, Washington, DC
Saira Sultan, JD, President & CEO, Connect 4 Strategies
M Kay Scanlon, JD, Senior Advisor, Connect 4 Strategies
Moderator: Claire Gill, Interim CEO, National Osteoporosis Foundation
ASBMR Webinar Panel on Treating Patients with Osteoporosis During the COVID-19 Pandemic
This webinar featured a panel of clinical experts in bone discussing timely topics related to osteoporosis treatment and the COVID-19 pandemic, including:
- Prolia® (denosumab) and the immune system
- Approaches to transitioning patients from Prolia® (denosumab)
- Timing of Evenity® (romosozumab) and possible transition to other treatments
- Transition from skeletal anabolics to antiresorptives
Panel of Clinical Experts:
Matthew Drake, MD, PhD, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota
Doug Bauer, MD, University of California, San Francisco, California
Bart Clarke, MD, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota
Elena Tsourdi, MD, Technische Universität Dresden, Germany,
Elaine Yu, MD, MMSc, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston
Amgen recommends the use of its products only in accordance with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA)-approved prescribing information. Please refer to the full prescribing information for approved product labeling and important safety information – https://www.amgenmedinfo.com/Home
Letter from NOF Interim CEO
March 20, 2020
As the coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to spread in communities across the country, we know that there is increasing uncertainty and anxiety as we are less able to plan and are worried about the health and well-being of ourselves, our loved ones and our communities. We must not panic, but instead practice patience and compassion.
The National Osteoporosis Foundation (NOF) has been monitoring the situation from a variety of sources and putting plans in place to address the ongoing needs, health and well-being of our NOF community. Following is information for patients/caregivers and healthcare providers that we hope will be helpful to you.
For Osteoporosis Patients and Caregivers
Osteoporosis Medications – It is recommended that you have at least a one-month supply of your current medications on hand during this time of social distancing and self-quarantine. This includes your osteoporosis medications.
- If you are taking the following oral medications or self-injectables to treat your osteoporosis, please check with your healthcare provider to make sure you have adequate amounts on hand:
- Alendronate (brand names: Fosamax®, Binosto®)
- Ibandronate (brand name: Boniva®
- Risedronate (brand names: Actonel®, Atelvia™)
- Raloxifene (brand name: Evista®)
- Calcitonin (brand names: Fortical®, Miacalcin® o Estrogen (multiple brands)
- Estrogen/Bazedoxifene (brand name Duavee®)
- Teriparatide (brand name: Forteo®) If you finish your 2 years of teriparatide or decide to discontinue the medication, please discuss an alternative medication so you do not have bone loss when you stop it.
- Abaloparatide (brand name: Tymlos®) If you finish your two years of abaloparatide or decide to discontinue the medication, please discuss an alternative medication so you do not have bone loss when you stop it.
- It is extremely important that patients taking the following medications administered by a healthcare provider stay on time for scheduled injections:
- Denosumab (brand name Prolia®) – If you skip or delay taking a dose, you have an increased risk for breaking a bone, especially if you already have a broken bone in your spine. Please discuss your schedule with your healthcare professional as soon as possible.
- Romosozumab (brand name Evenity®) – If you miss or delay a dose of EVENITY®, please contact your healthcare provider as soon as possible to schedule your next dose.
- Zoledronic acid (brand name: Reclast®): This is a once-a-year infusion and can be delayed for a short period of time since the medication lasts a long time. Please discuss the schedule with your healthcare professional.
- For all medications, if you have questions or concerns, be sure to discuss your osteoporosis management and treatment schedule with your healthcare provider.
Calcium and vitamin D – It is important to continue with the calcium (food FIRST and supplement for any shortfall in your diet) and vitamin D schedule and management that were established with your healthcare professional.
NOF recommends that all its Support Groups suspend in-person meetings as directed by local governments and health departments. NOF will be providing access to a teleconference phone line for any Support Group Leaders who wish to use teleconferencing as a substitute for in-person meetings. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
We also encourage patients and caregivers to utilize NOF’s free, peer-to-peer online support community to stay connected with others who are impacted by osteoporosis and low bone mass: https://www.bonehealthandosteoporosis.org/patients/patient-support/osteoporosis-support-community/.
For Healthcare Providers
We are carefully evaluating the potential impact on our upcoming annual clinical meeting, the Interdisciplinary Symposium on Osteoporosis (ISO), scheduled for May 27-30, 2020 in Washington, D.C. With just over two months until the start of the ISO, we continue to monitor the impact of COVID-19 and will make a decision that is in the best interest of our community. We will provide further updates on our conference website – https://interdisciplinarysymposiumosteoporosis.org/.
If you have questions about patient care, treatment or guidelines, please visit BoneSource®, our website for healthcare professionals – https://www.bonesource.org/. Or contact NOF at email@example.com.
Additional Information and Resources
According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), the elderly and adults with underlying health issues are at greatest risk for severe disease due to COVID-19. The best way to protect against respiratory illness, including COVID-19, is to continue to practice good health habits:
- Avoid others who are sick. Separate yourself from all individuals by six (6) feet.
- Frequently wash hands with soap and water or use alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
- Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue.
- Disinfect surfaces around your home and/or office regularly.
- Avoid shaking hands, hugging and kissing.
- Avoid large gatherings.
- If you become ill, stay home, call your doctor’s office to discuss symptoms. Go to a healthcare facility only if directed by your physician or if you are seriously ill.
Following are links to useful resources for accurate information regarding coronavirus and steps to take to avoid contracting the virus and what to do if you feel you may have been infected:
- CMS Clinician Info
NOF suggests that everyone in its community follow the recommendations of the CDC. If you have specific medical questions related to COVID-19 and your health, please contact your healthcare provider. We hope everyone in our community will remain safe and healthy.
Sincerely, Claire Gill Interim CEO