Table 2

Qualitative questions and responses provided in the survey

QuestionRheumatologists responses and quotations
Are your patients having problems with access to their medications, other than hydroxychloroquine/chloroquine, because of the pandemic?‘Travel restrictions’
‘Transportation issues’
‘Movement restrictions because of lockdown’
‘Delay in getting applications approved for biologics by government’
Do you believe rheumatic patients from racial/ethnic minority groups will do worse in the pandemic?‘Certain rheumatic conditions tend to cause worse disease in specific ethnicities and I worry about COVID in those patients and them not reaching out when they should’
‘Data would suggest so, but this is confounded by socioeconomics best to my knowledge which gets into a different discussion on social determinants of health etc.’
Do you believe rheumatic patients from lower SES will do worse in the pandemic?‘Yes, close living quarters or urban areas can increase risk of transmission’
‘Lack empowerment to seek care, or distrust of the medical system’
‘I worry they will not seek care out when needed’
‘Less access to self-protection. i.e. masks’
‘Yes, in general they have a more difficult time financially, more single moms, more crowded homes’
‘Higher proportion of multiple comorbid conditions in the lower socioeconomic groups’
‘Due to loss of medical insurance from loss of employment’
Do your concerns for your patients vary depending on their social or SES?‘Yes, concerned as these patients are less able to effectively socially distance’
‘Patients who live in large groups, or live in transient housing, or experiencing homelessness.. I worry about this a lot actually’
‘Yes, because they are unable to quit their job as they need the money’
‘These patients are less concerned because they don’t understand due to lower health literacy’
‘Patients who cannot restrict their movement/socially distance because of work requirements: childcare providers, janitors, cashiers’
  • SES, socioeconomic status.