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Experience of telemedicine use in a big cohort of patients with rheumatoid arthritis during COVID-19 pandemic
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  1. Pedro Santos-Moreno1,
  2. Josefina Chavez-Chavez2,
  3. Sandra Milena Hernández-Zambrano3,
  4. Diana Patricia Rivera-Triana2,
  5. Ruth Alexandra Castiblanco-Montañez3,
  6. Anggie Aza1,
  7. Diana Buitrago-Garcia4,
  8. Laura Villarreal1,
  9. Adriana Rojas-Villarraga2
  1. 1 Rheumatology, Biomab IPS, Bogotá, Colombia
  2. 2 Research Department, Fundacion Universitaria de Ciencias de la Salud, Bogota, Cundinamarca, Colombia
  3. 3 Nurse Department, Fundacion Universitaria de Ciencias de la Salud, Bogota, Cundinamarca, Colombia
  4. 4 Epidemiology, Biomab IPS, Bogotá, Colombia
  1. Correspondence to Dr Pedro Santos-Moreno, Rheumatology, Biomab IPS, Bogotá 1386, Colombia; pedrosantosmoreno{at}hotmail.com

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We have read with interest the work of Bozzalla-Cassione et al 1 published recently in your journal regarding the implementation of a telemedicine programme for patients with lupus in northern Italy. It is logical to suppose that the risk of patients with rheumatic diseases of having a more severe clinical course if they become infected with the COVID-19 infection is very high; however, although some of the reports show that there seems to be a low incidence of COVID-19 infection in patients with rheumatic disease, collaborative work with large cohorts is needed, which could show us the real incidence of COVID-19 infection in these patients and what happens with the establishment of telemedicine programmes.2–6

We show an experience in a specialised centre in Bogota, Colombia; currently, we have a cohort of 5597 patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA) in exclusively ambulatory care. On 12 March 2020, in Colombia, the health emergency by COVID-19 was established and a week later the Ministry of Health ordered the outpatient care procedure for the population in isolation. From that moment on, our …

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