NPF Medical Board COVID-19 Recommendations for Patients with Psoriatic Disease
- Pediatric and adult patients with psoriasis or psoriatic arthritis are encouraged to follow CDC, WHO and federal/local guidelines and practices to protect themselves and others.
- If a patient or their family member gets sick and suspect COVID-19 infection, please stay home and telephone your health care provider immediately.
- Patients with COVID-19 infection should be under the care of a health care provider and should let their provider know that they are taking a biologic.
- The NPF Medical Board recommends telehealth appointments whenever possible for routine visits during this pandemic.
- Although psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis are immune-mediated diseases, if an individual is not on an immunosuppressive medication or have other comorbid diseases, there may be minimal additional risk of contracting COVID-19 above the rest of the population. Patients with severe disease, those on potentially immunosuppressive therapies and/or those presenting with comorbid conditions may be at greater risk of infection.
- At this time, the NPF Medical Board does not recommend that all patients stop biologic therapy. It is recommended that:
- Individuals should stop a biologic if they have COVID-19 infection
- Individuals in high risk groups should have a conversation with their health care provider about whether it is recommended to continue or alter therapy
- Factors health care providers should consider in all management decisions in consult with the patient:
- The specific treatment/biologic being used
- The age, disease characteristics and possible underlying medical conditions of the patient
- Patient’s specific situation and concerns
- While there is not strong COVID-19-related evidence to provide specific guidelines or risk level, patients on oral immunosuppressive therapy may be at greater risk of infection.
- The following are considered groups of higher risk of infection:
- Those over the age of 60
- Those who smoke
- Those with chronic medical conditions like lung disease, heart disease, diabetes or cancer
- The decision to stop a biologic or oral systemic therapy is an individual decision that should be made in conjunction with a health care provider.
- Patients with concerns should contact their health care provider’s office.
We continue to monitor and cover this topic on our podcast, Psound Bytes. Catch some of our latest episodes here:
- Episode 66: CME.25 Coronavirus COVID-19: Opinions from Experts in Psoriatic Disease
- Episode 67: Experts in Psoriatic Disease Share Their Thoughts About COVID-19
- Episode 68: CME .5 Finding the Facts - A Pulmonologist's View on COVID-19
- Episode 69: Facts vs Fiction: Pulmonologist's View on COVID-19
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For more than 50 years, we’ve been driving efforts to cure psoriatic disease and improve the lives of those affected. But there’s still plenty to do! Learn how you can help our advocacy team shape the laws and policies that affect people with psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis – in your state and across the country. Help us raise funds to support research by joining Team NPF, where you can walk, run, cycle, play bingo or create your own fundraising event. If you or someone you love needs free, personalized support for living a healthier life with psoriatic disease, contact our Patient Navigation Center. And keep the National Psoriasis Foundation going strong by making a donation today. Together, we will find a cure.