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The Capital Region of Denmark - a part of Copenhagen University Hospital

Experiences during the COVID-19 Pandemic among People with Inflammatory Arthritis: "Reopening of Society Is Harder than Lock-Down"-A Qualitative Interview Study

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review


  • Lene Dahl Lund
  • Mette Margrethe Løwe
  • Oliver Hendricks
  • Karen Schreiber
  • Bente Glintborg
  • Randi Petersen
  • Christiane Plischke
  • Willy Fick
  • Jette Primdahl
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People with inflammatory arthritis (IA) treated with immunosuppressive disease-modifying anti-rheumatic drugs (DMARDs) were initially considered to have an increased risk of severe illness from the SARS-CoV-2 virus compared to the general population. The aim of this study was to explore how people with IA experienced restrictions during the pandemic and the possible impact of vaccination on their protection against COVID-19 and their everyday lives. Nineteen people with IA were interviewed in May-August 2021; shortly thereafter they were enrolled in the Danish national COVID-19 vaccination programme. Concurrently, society gradually reopened after a national complete lockdown. The analysis was inspired by inductive qualitative content analysis. Participants expressed a lack of targeted information on the specific risk associated with IA if they contracted COVID-19. They had to define their own level of daily-life restrictions to protect themselves and their families. They were impacted by inconsistent announcements by the authorities, and some expressed concerns regarding the potential influence of DMARDs on vaccine effectiveness. A societal spirit of being "in this together" emerged through the lockdown, and some were concerned that the reduced level of restrictions in the reopened society would put them at higher risk of a COVID-19 infection and force them to continue self-isolating.

Original languageEnglish
Article number982
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 21 Jun 2022

ID: 79928602