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Blood ; 138:4070, 2021.
Article in English | EMBASE | ID: covidwho-1582214


Background: The COVID-19 disease has spread throughout the world in an unprecedented way. France and Brazil confirmed the first cases in the European and South American regions with high incidence rates at the peak of the first wave of contamination along the year 2020. Patients with hematological disorders, especially malignancies, may be more vulnerable to SARS-CoV-2 infection because of the underlying disease and treatment. Since COVID-19 presentation is heterogeneous, from asymptomatic up to severe life-threatening forms and the patients with malignancies and COVID-19 admitted to the hospital show a wide range of clinical manifestations and laboratory abnormalities, it is still unclear for clinicians which patients, blood tests at admission and disease factors are associated with worse outcomes. Getting further insights into patients with specific diseases is of particular interest. We aimed to identify profiles of hematologic patients hospitalized with COVID-19 that would be associated with survival, and to assess the differences between cohorts. Methods: A binational cohort including all consecutive hematological patients aged 18 years or more with moderate or severe COVID-19, requiring hospitalization until December 2020 at two tertiary centers, from Paris, France and São Paulo, Brazil, was studied. Patients with a hospital stay of less than 24 hours were excluded. All patients were followed until the end of hospitalization;then, after discharge, survival data was recovered on medical charts or outpatient consultations, if data were available. Patient profiles were based on age, comorbidities, blood tests at admission, COVID-19 symptoms, and hematological disease characteristics. A semi-supervised learning method was first used to obtain the prognostic driven profiles;then, a classifier was identified to allow the classification of patients using only admission (baseline) data. Results: A total of 263 patients (135 from Brazil and 128 from France) were enrolled. Male patients (58.2%), elderly (≥ 65 years, 46%), with high comorbidities prevalence were frequent. Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma (29.3%), multiple myeloma (19.4%) and chronic myeloid disorders (12.9%) were the most frequent underlying hematological malignancies and 13.3% of patients had benign diseases. Most of the patients (59.7%) had undergone chemotherapy in the last six months before COVID-19 admission. The clinical presentation of COVID-19 was similar in the two countries. Fever (68.4%), dyspnea (60.1%) and cough (55.9%) were the main symptoms at admission. The ICU admission (56% versus 25%) and invasive ventilation (42% versus 19%) rates were notably higher among Brazilian patients due to scarce ICU beds during the peak of transmission in France. The overall in-hospital mortality rate was 115/263 (43.7% [95%CI 37.6-49.9]) and the median follow-up after admission was 63 days (IQR 40-98). There was no evidence of survival difference between countries after adjusting on age, comorbidities, and diagnosis. Two clusters were identified, segregating young patients with few comorbidities, low CRP, D-dimers, LDH and creatinine levels, with a 30-day survival of 77.1%, versus 46.7% in remainders. The profiles (clusters) were strongly associated with survival (p<0.001), even after adjusting on age (p<0.001) (Figure 1). We identified a set of rules to classify patients into the two profiles, using only information available at hospital admission, with a high accuracy rate (97.7% on the training set and 84.9% on the validation set). The baseline predictors consecutively selected by the model were the number of comorbidities, creatinine, CRP, a continuous regimen of chemotherapy, platelets and lymphocytes counts, a symptom of ageusia, dyspnea, hematological malignancy, high blood pressure, and symptom of myalgia. Conclusions: This analysis allowed to identify two profiles of hospitalized hematological patients with COVID-19 that have a different outcome when infected with SARS-CoV-2. The results showed the importance of CRP, LHD, and creatinine in COVID-19 prese tation and prognosis, whatever the geographic origin of the patients. The identification of patterns and clinical manifestations experienced by hematological patients during moderate or severe SARS-CoV-2 infection might be helpful to medical staff in the care management and in the allocation of scarce resources. [Formula presented] Disclosures: No relevant conflicts of interest to declare.

Blood ; 136:26, 2020.
Article in English | EMBASE | ID: covidwho-1344063


Introduction: Hematopoietic Cell Transplant (HCT) is a potential curative treatment for hematological diseases. Patients undergoing HCT are usually immunosuppressed and require frequent outpatient visits. Patients actively enrolled at Hospital das Clínicas, School of Medicine, University of Sao Paulo (HCFMUSP) HCT Outpatient Clinic were already reached via Whatsapp (personal or family members’ cell phones) for clinic appointments and non-medical information before the COVID-19 pandemic. Since the onset of the pandemic, we have faced a challenge: providing medical care for HCT patients while preventing environmental exposure to SARS-CoV-2. Our HCT team started performing telehealth care using a HIPAA-compliant Google Meet-based institutional platform and telephone calls in March/2020. To evaluate this strategy as a permanent tool, we sent out a survey to patients in order to better understand their opinion on and early experience with telehealth. Methods: We sent out a questionnaire on Google Forms containing a few questions regarding barriers to commute to hospital, internet access, feelings about the use of telehealth at our outpatient clinic and their incipient experience with it. Participants were instructed to answer the questions from the patient's perspective, regardless if the survey was filled out by the patients themselves or caregivers. The questionnaire was anonymous, written in Portuguese, and remained open from August 3rd to 9th, 2020. Results: A survey invitation was sent out to 299 patients who had been seen in clinic over the last 12 months. During this period, all patients provided a contact number that could reached through Whatsapp, either on their own or a caregiver's smartphone. Of these, 133 patients answered the survey. The total time to go to and come back from hospital was <30 min for 5%, 30-60 min for 23%, 60-90 min for 20%, 90-120 min for 14% and >120 min for 38%. Total cost to commute to and from hospital (for both the patient and an eventual caregiver) was > US$ 10.00 for 42% (equivalent to 5% of the minimum wage per month). Thirty-two percent of participants reported any degree of mobility disability. Thirty-three and 29% of patients complained of long waiting times for in-person doctor and pharmacy appointments, respectively. In terms of technology, 97% had a personal cell phone or smartphone. Ninety-five percent of patients had access to internet on a smartphone, and 32% through a personal computer (some had both). Sixty-six percent reported no difficulty using a cell phone, 23% some difficulty and 9% significant difficulty. Ninety-five percent regularly used social media apps. Approximately half of the patients had at least one previous interaction via telehealth with our center during the COVID-19 pandemic, of whom 92% considered it a good or very good experience. When inquired if they would like to start receiving or continue to receive telehealth care, 83% answered yes, 10% expressed some interest and 7% declared no interest. When asked about their opinion on widening telehealth use at the HCFMUSP HCT Outpatient Clinic following the pandemic, 43% answered they would certainly use it, 45% thought it could be good, 5% had concerns, 4% were indifferent, and 3% did not approve the idea. Conclusions: In-person appointments seem to be both cost and time-consuming and represent a relevant burden on this limited-resource population. Despite being a public health institution from a middle-income country, most of our patients have personal cell phones with easy internet access. Among those who had an incipient experience with telehealth, the impression was overall positive. We cannot rule out selection bias towards participants who were more familiar with technology and thus more inclined to appreciate telehealth. Taken together, although not always fit for all clinical scenarios, our findings suggest telehealth may be efficient and complementary to in-person interactions with HCT patients, and prompt wider implementation of this health care modality. Disclosures: No relevant conflicts f interest to declare.