Pharmacogenomics: Genetics for Smarter Medication Management Against COVID-19

The CDC and FDA recommend healthcare providers educate their patients with chronic underlying medical conditions about additional steps that the patients may take to protect themselves from COVID-19 infection, as well as, how to decrease the infection’s morbidity and mortality should the patient become infected .

One way to decrease COVID-19’s morbidity and mortality is to ensure patients with pre-existing comorbidities are consuming medications for their chronic diseases that are therapeutic and those that do not cause adverse drug events. Non-therapeutic medications and adverse drug events in this population will further jeopardize the patient’s ability to resist infection with or survival of COVID-19. Pharmacogenomics driven medication therapy management has proven to improve clinical outcomes in patients who consume medications for the exact same chronic underlying medical conditions described by the CDC as high-risk factors for COVID-19’s increased morbidity and mortality.

A second way to decrease COVID-19’s morbidity and mortality is to ensure all patients, regardless of pre- existing comorbidities, upon exposure to or infection with COVID-19, are consuming only those medications that are therapeutic and those that do not cause adverse drug events. Several high-risk gene-drug pairs exist that may cause severe adverse drug events and non-therapeutic outcomes if prescribed and managed without pharmacogenomics data no matter the patient’s status at prescribing. Non- therapeutic medications and adverse drug events resulting from high-risk-high-impact gene-drug pairs would move a previously low-risk patient to a high-risk patient and increase the opportunity for poor COVID-19 outcomes.

Lastly, a way to decrease COVID-19’s morbidity and mortality is to precisely prescribe and manage supportive care medications for both the COVID-19 infected patient and the non-infected patient who both may experience new onset or an increase in anxiety and depression and their sequelae as the patients deal with disruptions in their daily lives and possibly fear for their futures. For COVID-19 infected patients, pre-emptive pharmacogenomics testing is especially critical for quickly and precisely prescribing both supportive medications during the patient’s convalescence period and also post-convalescence to mitigate COVID-19’s long-term outcomes.

In brief, all patients, regardless of their COVID-19 status should consume only the most effective medication with the least risk for adverse drug reactions (ADRs) to reduce COVID-19’s negative outcomes.

CarePortMD is partnering with Admera Health to make their powerful PGxOne PlusTM pharmacogenomics test available at over 40 CarePortMD Enhanced Telehealth Access Centers across Delaware and Southeastern Pennsylvania. This will enable our affiliate pharmacists to recommend precisely effective and optimally safe therapies to manage chronic disease in patients with and without COVID-19.

Ashok Subramanian, MD, CEO/CMO

source: Admera Health.

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