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COVID-19 update: March 4, 2022

COVID-19 update: March 4, 2022

Resources for members to share with patients

We encourage you to copy the patient-friendly information section below and use it in your communications with patients about COVID-19 prevention.

As our clinical understanding of COVID-19 precautions continues to evolve, it is important for transplant programs to communicate proactively with transplant candidates and recipients on ways to prevent COVID-19 transmission and to monitor themselves for potential exposure. Many patients are seeking guidance on vaccination, in light of new recommendations for COVID-19 vaccination for immunocompromised individuals.

Providers: use the COVID-19 Therapeutics Locator to help patients

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services maintains a national map displaying public locations that have received shipments of COVID-19 therapeutics granted an Emergency Use Authorization by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). These therapies require a prescription, and the locator is intended for provider use. Patients should not contact locations directly unless instructed to do so by their healthcare provider. You can view the locator map here.

Reminder: reporting COVID-19-related cause of death for transplant candidates and recipients

Transplant programs reporting a cause of death for a transplant candidate or recipient in WaitlistSM or TIEDI® should select “Infection: Viral – COVID-19,” if the program believes to the best of its knowledge that COVID-19 was an underlying cause of death or a significant cause of death. This code was established in April 2020 to facilitate assessment of the disease’s impact on the candidate and recipient populations.

Site surveys to gradually transition to in-person visits by end of March

Site survey teams are planning a phased reintroduction of onsite interactions, with transplant hospitals beginning in late March. Member Quality hopes to conduct all routine reviews for member organizations onsite by mid-2022. We will continue to monitor the pandemic conditions and will be prepared to pivot back to our virtual survey model if needed.

Please email MQfeedback@unos.org with any questions about site surveys.

NIH updates COVID-19 treatment guidelines

The National Institute of Health (NIH) has updated their Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) Guidelines with the latest developments in COVID-19 treatment for health care providers and patients.

Some recent additions include:

  • Recommendations for the treatment of multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C)
  • Update to antiviral drug recommendations for COVID-19 patients at high risk of disease progression
  • Recommendation on using therapeutic or prophylactic anticoagulation in hospitalized COVID-19 patients

Read all of the NIH COVID-19 treatment guidelines here.


Reminders

Winter 2022 public comment is open

  • Reinstatement of updates to candidate data during the COVID-19 emergency is open for public comment. Read all the public comment proposals and provide feedback on the OPTN website.

FDA authorizes new monoclonal antibody treatment of COVID-19

  • The FDA has issued an emergency use authorization for Bebtelovimab for the treatment of mild to moderate COVID-19 in adults and pediatric patients. Read more here.

AST updates COVID-19 vaccine FAQ sheet

FDA advisory committee postpones meeting to discuss authorizing the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine for young children

  • The FDA has postponed the Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee meeting originally scheduled for Feb. 15 to allow the agency to consider additional data. Read more here.

The latest data on organ donation and transplant in the U.S.

  • Find high-level data on transplants, deceased donors recovered, patients added to the waitlist and patients temporarily moved to inactive waitlist status.

Questions

  • For COVID-19 related policy and operational questions, email member.questions@unos.org
  • For information about winter 2022 virtual regional meetings and registration details, click here.
  • For information and updates about the status of in-person vs. virtual OPTN committee meetings, check the OPTN calendar of events.

 

 

Patient-friendly information for members to share

To help you share updates and resources about COVID-19 prevention with your patients, here is information you can copy and add to your regular communications. Find more information at TransplantLiving.org.


Transplant patients: Looking for answers to questions about COVID-19 and transplant?

Go to TransplantLiving.org for the latest news and resources, including:

Frequently asked questions and answers

  • What are the recommended precautions immunocompromised people should take to prevent against coronavirus?
  • What does it mean to be “immunocompromised”?
  • What COVID-19 treatments are available for those who are immunosuppressed?

Vaccine information

  • FDA Authorizes new monoclonal antibody for treatment of COVID-19 that retains activity against Omicron variant
  • American Society of Transplantation updates COVID-19: Vaccine FAQ Sheet
  • FDA approves Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine

Webinars

  • The COVID-19 Vaccine: What does it mean for our transplant recipient children? Presented by Transplant Families and the American Society of Transplantation (AST)
  • COVID-19 and Transplant: Patient questions answered. Hosted by UNOS Chief Medical Officer, David Klassen, M.D.

Spanish language resources

  • Information about COVID-19 vaccines for Hispanic patients from the American Society of Transplantation (AST)

 

This information is not intended as specific health advice. If you have more detailed questions, contact your medical provider.

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