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COVID-19 and Management of Bone and Joint Disorders

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The current situation has led the USBJI to place more emphasis on ways of offering our programs which do not entail, for the moment, in-person gatherings. It is not the USBJI’s philosophy to allow COVID-19 to slow the need to raise awareness and educate Americans on the prevalence, prevention, diagnosis and treatment of bone and joint disorders. These disorders affect one in two Americans. Our work has not stopped, and we are adapting to circumstances.

Patient education messaging is particularly important and relevant given the current situation – many people with bone and joint disorders, especially those with systemic auto-immune disorders, are concerned with access to their providers and to their medications, among other issues. People with rheumatic diseases face challenges as access to their medical team has been made more difficult (although some may have access to telehealth appointments). They must manage more on their own for the moment. Adherence to prescribed medication at a time like this is equally important. Stay-at-home confinement which makes sedentary behavior more likely is contrary to the daily physical activity recommended by the CDC that people need to remain healthy. Furthermore, patient access to formal in-person physical therapy has been drastically reduced forcing many to look for other alternatives to meet this need.  The importance of USBJI programming in meeting patient educational needs is highlighted during this crisis.

Research is the driver to discovering how to improve our knowledge of the novel coronavirus and the prevention and treatment of COVID-19. We appreciate that investigators still have plans for research grant submissions and resubmissions. The USBJI does not want the current situation to delay those plans. Our Young Investigator Initiative program workshop was held in a modified manner this Spring and we encourage applications for the next cycle by July 15. The Fall workshop will continue to deliver the promised guidance, peer-interaction and mentoring so participants can continue to meet grant submission deadlines and advance their research careers.

Return to Sports and Exercise during the COVID-19 Pandemic: Guidance for High School and Collegiate Athletic Program - Link to document. Contributing authors, members of The National Athletic Trainers' Association.

Many organizations are producing and offering information relating to COVID-19, including for people with bone and joint disorders. The following are links to some of those organizations and the information they offer.

American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (M) - Link to information  
 
American Physical Therapy Association (M) - Link to information
 
American Society for Bone and Mineral Research (M) - Link to information
           Joint Guidance on Osteoporosis Management in the Era of COVID-19 from the ASBMR, AACE, Endocrine Society, ECTS and NOF - Link to information
 
Arthritis Foundation (M) - Link to information
 
American College of Rheumatology (ACR) (M) - Link to information 
ACR COVID-19 Clinical Guidance for Adult Patients with Rheumatic Diseases - Link to information
 
COVID-19 Global Rheumatology Alliance - Link to information
The GRA collects, analyze and disseminate information about COVID-19 and rheumatology to patients, physicians and other relevant groups to improve the care of patients with rheumatic disease. Its vision is to bring together the global rheumatology community to curate and disseminate accurate and comprehensive knowledge to advance rheumatology care in the COVID-19 pandemic. They maintain provider and patient experience registries.
 
COVID-19 Emergency Food Assistance Program for Patients with Rheumatoid Arthritis
Designed to keep immunocompromised patients safe during the COVID-19 Pandemic, Bristol-Myers Squibb in collaboration with Team Rubicon and the Patient Advocate Foundation (PAF) offers a food assistance program for patients with a current cancer diagnosis, multiple sclerosis or rheumatoid arthritis who experience difficulty accessing food due to COVID-19. The program uses an online platform to identify the need and location of immunocompromised patients in communities across the United States, and mobilize and match one of Team Rubicon’s 120,000 primarily veteran volunteers to deliver food and other critical supplies. The online platform also allows patients with an identified financial need to apply for a one-time grant of $500 to help pay for food and nutritional needs. There are eligibility criteria for the grant and all patients may not qualify. - Link to information

International Fibrodysplasia Ossificans Progressiva Association (IFOPA) - Link to information 

International Osteoporosis Foundation - Link to information
 
Movement is Life, The Health Disparities Podcast series, of particular interest to African American, Hispanic/Latino and rural communities - Link to information
 
National Athletic Trainers' Association (M) - Link to information

National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (UK) - Link to information 
 
National Osteoporosis Foundation (M) - Link to information 

Orthopaedic Trauma Association - FAQs for Patients Regarding Elective Surgery - Link to information
 
Osteoarthritis Action Alliance - Link to information
 
Osteogenesis Imperfecta Foundation (M) - Link to information
 
(M) = USBJI Member