Background: The Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has evolved as a pandemic infectious disease transmitted by the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV-)2. Allergists and other health care providers (HCPs) in the field of allergies and associated airway diseases are in the front line, taking care of patients potentially infected with SARS-CoV-2. Hence, strategies and practices to minimize risks of infection for both HCPs and treated patients have to be developed and followed by allergy clinics.
Method: The scientific information on COVID-19 was analyzed by a literature search in Medline, Pubmed, national and international guidelines from the European Academy of Allergy and Clinical Immunology (EAACI), the Cochrane Library and the Internet.
Results: Based on diagnostic and treatment standards developed by EAACI, on international information regarding COVID-19, on guidelines of the World Health Organization (WHO) and other international organizations as well as on previous experience, a panel of experts including clinicians, psychologists, IT experts and basic scientists along with EAACI and the "Allergic Rhinitis and its Impact on Asthma (ARIA)" inititiative have developed recommendations for the optimal management of allergy clinics during the current COVID-19 pandemic. These recommendations are grouped into nine sections on different relevant aspects for the care of patients with allergies.
Conclusions: This international Position Paper provides recommendations on operational plans and procedures to maintain high standards in the daily clinical care of allergic patients whilst ensuring necessary safety in the current COVID-19 pandemic.
Keywords: COVID-19; SARS-CoV-2; allergen immunotherapy (AIT); allergy clinic; anaphylaxis; asthma; clinical trials; position paper; psychological COVID.
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