There are several international efforts to record the patterns of COVID-19 in adults and children with IBD.
As of March 24th, five children were notified - all these children had very mild disease. Further, there were 72 adults notified - these people were from many different countries. Again, we understand that these people have typically had very mild COVID-19.
In addition to these international efforts, we are aware of the experience of doctors looking after more than 500 people (adults and children) in Bergamo (a region of Italy that has had many COVID-19 infections). None of the patients with IBD looked after in this clinic has had COVID-19 infection at all. Which is great news to hear!
This information does help us to understand about how people with IBD respond to this infection. Because of the nature of the information available, it is changing and evolving rapidly.
We do remind everyone of the key tips regarding COVID-19 and IBD
1. Please maintain all your usual medications, unless following direct advice from your own doctor or IBD nurse.
2. We do not want you to cease your usual medicines and risk having a flare of disease.
3. It does seem that people with active IBD are more likely to have the infection.
4. Smokers also appear to be more at risk of COVID-19 infection.
5. It does also appear that COVID-19 infection is typically mild.
6. Please follow all the current government regulations closely (hand-washing, social distancing, and now isolation at home). Please check on the https://covid19.govt.nz/ website for specifics about these if your are not sure.
For more information also check the Ministry of Health website;