COVID-19 associated VTE: International thrombosis community urge WHO to act


The International Society on Thrombosis and Haemostasis (ISTH), on behalf of the international thrombosis community, have called on the World Health Organisation (WHO) to share learning and support a systematic approach for managing venous thromboembolism (VTE) in patients with COVID-19.

In a multinational consensus statement—published 15 July—the ISTH, on behalf of numerous national, continental, and international clinical representative organisations, “urgently calls on the WHO to endorse and share the application of a system-wide approach to VTE management on a global scale, as part of the international COVID-19 response”.

The statement reads that, while the WHO should be congratulated on the publication of interim guidance on the clinical management of hospitalised patients with COVID-19, “more must be done to meet the needs of front-line clinicians caring for patients with COVID-19 to ensure quality care”. They ISTH reference in particular a need to address “significant gaps” in expert clinical guidance surrounding the prevention and management of VTE in COVID-19 patients.

Concluding, the international thrombosis community emphasises the importance of the matter: “Until there is a vaccine for COVID-19, there is no better way to address this public health challenge than for the WHO to prioritise the development of systematic and integrated approaches to COVID-19-related VTE prevention that can be implemented in secondary and tertiary settings globally.”


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