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COVID-19 information for patients

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UPDATED: April 1, 2020  

BC Transplant is committed to supporting the wellbeing and safety of our patients and community during the COVID-19 pandemic. All transplant programs are working tirelessly to protect the safety of patients and minimize risks related to COVID-19. The donation and transplant program in BC has taken several actions:

  • Limiting non-essential in-person clinic visits by switching to virtual health platforms where possible
  • Postponing transplants where the risks of COVID-19 may outweigh the benefits at this time
  • Sharing resources and information to answer questions regarding COVID-19 for transplant patients

We understand this is a stressful and anxious time for many people in the transplant community. Please continue to protect yourselves and your loved ones by strictly following the physical distancing and self-isolation measures put in place by public health officials. If you have questions or concerns about your health, please contact your health care team.

Effective March 16, 2020, all transplant clinics across the province are limiting non-essential in-person clinic visits. Your appointment may be postponed, or it may take place over the phone or by video call.


Your transplant care team will let you know if you need to come into clinic for your appointment. This will depend on your health and the length of time since your transplant took place.


If you have an existing appointment, your transplant clinic will contact you to let you know next steps.

‎Your transplant care team will only order lab tests that they consider necessary at this time. If they are able to postpone bloodwork or other tests, they will do so.


If you are asked to visit a lab for tests, there are some precautions you can take:


- Schedule your appointment in advance to minimize waiting room time.
- Continue to wash your hands regularly, including before and after a visit.
- Keep a distance of at least one metre from others if possible.

- Depending on the length of your wait, you can also go outside of the lab and return as your appointment time gets closer.

If you are experiencing symptoms, such as a fever, shortness of breath, muscle aches, and/or cough, contact your transplant clinic for advice.


If you have an appointment, please let the clinic know if you have cold and/or flu symptoms. Do not come to the clinic without notifying staff.

UPDATED: March 30, 2020

BC Transplant pharmacies are limiting the amount of transplant medications they provide to a two-month supply at one time.
We want to reassure you that the transplant medication supply is currently stable.

We are not facing a shortage of any of our transplant medications, including tacrolimus, cyclosporine, mycophenolate mofetil (MMF), mycophenolate sodium, azathioprine, sirolimus, and prednisone.

BC Transplant is monitoring our supply chain very closely during the current COVID-19 situation in BC and around the world. The two-month limit is a precaution to help us ensure a stable long-term supply of necessary medications for all transplant recipients in BC.


We encourage you to continue to carefully read all information given by your pharmacist, in case there are any changes to your medication refills. If you have any questions about your medications, please phone your transplant pharmacy or clinic.
BC Transplant and our pharmacy partners are here to help and support you and to make sure that your care continues in the safest way possible.

Getting your medications from transplant pharmacies
If you are feeling unwell and require medications, please do not visit your pharmacy. Instead, call your pharmacy and they will arrange to safely provide you with your medications. Pharmacies are also making arrangements to deliver medications where possible.

COVID-19 Medication Info for Transplant Recipients‎

UPDATED: March 30, 2020
BC Transplant pharmacies are limiting the amount of transplant medications they provide to a two-month supply at one time.
We want to reassure you that the transplant medication supply is currently stable. We are not facing a shortage of any of our transplant medications, including tacrolimus, cyclosporine, mycophenolate mofetil (MMF), mycophenolate sodium, azathioprine, sirolimus, and prednisone.
BC Transplant is monitoring our supply chain very closely during the current COVID-19 situation in BC and around the world. The two-month limit is a precaution to help us ensure a stable long-term supply of necessary medications for all transplant recipients in BC.
We encourage you to continue to carefully read all information given by your pharmacist, in case there are any changes to your medication refills. If you have any questions about your medications, please phone your transplant pharmacy or clinic.
BC Transplant and our pharmacy partners are here to help and support you and to make sure that your care continues in the safest way possible.
Getting your medications from transplant pharmacies
If you are feeling unwell and require medications, please do not visit your pharmacy. Instead, call your pharmacy and they will arrange to safely provide you with your medications. Pharmacies are also making arrangements to deliver medications where possible.  

In order to minimize risk to donors and recipients in relation to the COVID-19 outbreak, and to support health care and hospital capacity, all scheduled living donor kidney transplants at St. Paul’s Hospital and Vancouver General Hospital have been postponed. This guidance is in place until April 10, 2020, and will be re-evaluated on a regular basis.

 

For more information on novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19)

The BCCDC has a document for patients with chronic health conditions, which is relevant for transplant recipients, who are immunocompromised: BCCDC COVID-19 information for patients with chronic health conditions.

BC COVID-19 - Symptom Self Assessment Tool

      BCCDC COVID-19 Updates

Additional Resources
BC Transplant
 
SOURCE: COVID-19 information for patients ( )
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