Aims: The present study sought to examine the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic and lockdown measures on the prescription of sacubitril/valsartan in patients with heart failure (HF) in Italy.
Methods and results: Data from Italian Medicines Agency (AIFA) monitoring registries were analysed. The sacubitril/valsartan monitoring registry is based on 6-month prescriptions. A monthly aggregation on new activations throughout the observational period was computed. From March to December 2020, the initiation of new HF patients on sacubitril/valsartan decreased by nearly 40% with prescriptions dropping to values similar to 2018 when the registry was still operated off-line. A slight increase in prescriptions was observed after the lockdown measures were lifted, but prescriptions remained constantly below the pre-lockdown period.
Conclusion: A marked and worrisome decline during the COVID-19 pandemic in the activation of a life-saving treatment such as sacubitril/valsartan was observed. This decline was clearly linked to the lockdown measures instated to counteract the COVID-19 pandemic. Upcoming studies should analyse the occurrence of new cases of HF as well as the severity of patients admitted to hospitals and their mortality compared to pre-pandemic levels.
Keywords: COVID-19; Heart failure; Registry; Sacubitril/valsartan.
© 2022 European Society of Cardiology.