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Coronavirus Information for People Living with Lupus

The Lupus Foundation of America, Heartland Chapter is dedicated to the health and well-being of people living with lupus, their family and friends, our volunteers and donors. Our management team is closely monitoring the developments of COVID-19 in our region and across the nation to ensure the safety of our staff, volunteers and the people we serve. This page will be updated frequently so please check back.

Are People with Lupus Protected Against COVID-19?

There is no evidence that taking hydroxychloroquine (Plaquenil) is effective in preventing a person from contracting the coronavirus (COVID-19). People with lupus should follow the guidance of their doctor and the safety guidelines being issued by the CDC.

The Lupus Foundation of America supports continued research to investigate the potential use of hydroxychloroquine for COVID-19, but it is imperative to preserve access to this medication for people with lupus whose lives depend on it. Moreover, we also support the continued investigation of hydroxychloroquine in hospitalized patients with COVID-19, but there currently are no data to recommend the use of hydroxychloroquine as a preventive measure against the virus.

Global Registry On COVID-19 and Rheumatologic Diseases

The COVID-19 Global Rheumatology Alliance, which includes a large group of academics, clinicians, and patients, are recruiting adults with rheumatic diseases, and parents of children with rheumatic diseases into a study to obtain insights about how best to prevent or treat COVID-19 in this potentially vulnerable population.

Take the Survey

Information, Resources and Updates
Changes to Programs, Support Groups & Events

Heartland Chapter Office

Beginning March 17, 2020 our staff will be working remotely to ensure the health and safety of our team, as well as our communities. It will be business as usual for us with possible delays. So, please be patient with our staff. We'll continue to monitor the situation in real time to determine when circumstances change. We are so grateful for the flexibility and dedication of our employees, who have already shown their commitment to this temporary model, and to ensuring no disruptions to our mission during this time. We will be available via e-mail and will respond to voice mail messages as quickly as possible. You can email us at [email protected]


Lupus Support Groups

Out of an abundance of caution, we have decided to cancel our in-person support groups until further notice. 

We have selected a new format for support groups which means you can call in or join us via computer or smartphone!  Please disregard any other phone numbers that have been previously posted. 

To control who has access, we will only provide the information if you call or email mail us a request (email is the best way to reach us right now).

Send an email to [email protected] and ask for the information to be emailed to you. Or leave us a message at 314-644-2222 (ext. 100) and we will call you back. Please remember we are working remotely so we will reply as quickly as possible.

Please specify which group you are interested in attending as they have separate call/log in information.

Thursday, April 9, 2020
from 6:30 -8:00 p.m. 

Wednesday, April 22, 2020
from 6:30 -8:00 p.m


Resources to Help You Live Better With Lupus Workshops

These workshops were scheduled for April 21, 2020 in St. Louis and April 28, 2020 in Kansas City. These workshops have been cancelled but we are working on developing a webinar and will have that information posted here in the very near future.  If you registered for these workshops we will notify you of the new format and how to join. 


The Walk to End Lupus Now 

St. Louis Walk to End Lupus Now
NEW DATE - Saturday, September 19, 2020

Chesterfield's Central Park

Kansas City Walk to End Lupus Now
NEW DATE - Saturday, October 3, 202

Shawnee Mission Park

We encourage you to continue registering and fundraising for the Walks as they are our biggest source of income for our chapter. Together we can make this work!

More Information


The Purple Ball 

This event has been rescheduled for Saturday, August 1, 2020 at The Four Seasons Hotel. If you have purchased tickets for the event you are all set. If you purchased raffle tickets, the drawing will be held on Saturday, August 1. Ticket sales for the event and raffle will remain open until July 24 so feel free to join us.

 Purchase Tickets 


Summer Jam Youth Retreat

Due to the uncertainty of how long social distancing guidelines will be in place, we have decided to cancel our in-person camp and will be hosting a Virtual Camp on Saturday, June 13, 2020. More information coming soon.

Coronavirus Resources

This list is being updated regularly so please check back. 

Coronavirus and Lupus

Financial Assistance for People with Lupus: If you are a person living with lupus in Missouri, eastern Kansas or southern/central Illinois and are in need financial assistance, please reach out to us at 800-958-7876 or [email protected]

Missouri residents: For general questions about COVID-19 and Missouri’s response, contact 877.435.8411 or visit health.mo.gov

Illinois residents: For general questions about COVID-19 and Illinois’ response, contact 1.800.889.3931 or visit dph.illinois.gov

Kansas residents: For general questions about COVID-19 and Kansas' response, contact 1.866.534-3463 or visit https://govstatus.egov.com/coronavirus

United Way of Greater St. Louis 211

United Way of Greater Kansas City 211

Kansas City Resources

Many stores offering special hours for those at higher risk. 

Hy-Vee reserves 1 hour of shopping time prior to opening time for high-risk customers 

Tips for Managing Stress & Anxiety

City of St. Louis schools will provide free meals and snacks for children ages 18 and younger during COVID-19 closures.For more info and updates, visit www.slps.org/meals

East St. Louis Grab and Go Student Meals on Wheels

Ferguson-Florissant School District will provide meal delivery to students 

Hazelwood School District delivering meals district-wide

Talking to Kids about Coronavirus

Finding Joy

National Alliance on Mental Illness

Audible, an Amazon Company, is offering a free 30-day membership where you can listen to audiobooks and entertainment. 

Free workout videos for every fitness level. 

With masses of people stuck at home amid coronavirus, the popular meditation and mindfulness app, Headspace, is offering free content to help manage stress and anxiety. 

Artists are taking their shows to social media for people to watch and listen at home. 

Museums, historical sites, and national sites are offering virtual tours from the comfort of their home. 

12 Museums From Around the World That You Can Visit Virtually

Here are 33 National Park Tours you can take virtually from your home. 

Netflix Party is a gathering of a groups of friends or family where you can get together virtually and watch your favorite Netflix titles on your computers at the same time. Grab your popcorn and enjoy movie night! The extension also comes with a chat room, so you can share your reactions to the programs as you watch.

Free Resources from Calm

Activities for Kids and Families

Scholastic is opening its digital hub of learning tools for free for kids to take while out of school

Free online classes launched to help kids home from school

Yoga, mindfulness, and relaxation designed especially for kids aged 3+, used in schools and homes all over the world.

Story Time from Space - While in space, astronauts are videotaping themselves reading these books to the children of Earth.

Even when schools are closed, you can keep the learning going with these links for reading, math, and educational games. 

Scholastics Learn At Home

TumbleBooks 

ABCya!

Starfall 

Staying indoors to keep safe and healthy is imperative but it doesn’t have to be boring or detrimental. After your children have finished with their e-learning tasks, click here to see what you could do with them.

10 Zoos and Aquariums who are sharing live feeds for people to enjoy from the comfort of their own homes.

Charter is offering free access to internet for households with children

Ameren Missouri
Ameren Missouri supports customers during COVID-19 closures

Ameren Missouri teamed up with United Way of Greater St. Louis to provide help for customers who have been laid off or had their hours cut due to Coronavirus. The new Ameren Missouri Coronavirus Income Relief Program offers $250 to the accounts of affected customers who don’t usually qualify for energy assistance. Customers can apply for the relief assistance if their job has been impacted by the coronavirus and they meet qualifications based on household size and income. To apply, click here.

Tax Filing Deadline

Tax filing deadline pushed back: In an effort to mitigate the financial fall-out from COVID-19, the U.S. Treasury announced the new tax filing deadline is July 15. 

Filing for Unemployment
Missouri Unemployment Insurance Program

General Information about the Unemployment Insurance Program:

https://labor.mo.gov/unemployed-workers

To file a UI claim online:

https://uinteract.labor.mo.gov/benefits/home.do

To file a claim by telephone number:

https://labor.mo.gov/contact-labor

To check the status or get information on your claim:
http://www.labor.mo.gov


Coronavirus update: Missouri is providing updates on Unemployment Insurance changes related to COVID-19 here:
https://labor.mo.gov/coronavirus

Illinois Unemployment Insurance Program

General Information about the Unemployment Insurance Program:

https://www2.illinois.gov/ides/individuals/UnemploymentInsurance/Pages/default.aspx

To file a UI claim online:

https://www2.illinois.gov/ides/aboutides/Pages/10%20Things%20You%20Should%20Know.aspx

To file a claim by telephone number:

http://www.ides.illinois.gov/SitePages/ContactIDES.aspx

You may file in person. Click on this link for the nearest office:
http://www.ides.state.il.us/ietc/network/index.asp

Coronavirus update: Illinois is providing updates on Unemployment Insurance changes related to COVID-19 here:
https://www2.illinois.gov/ides/Pages/COVID-19-and-Unemployment-Benefits.aspx

Kansas Unemployment Insurance Program

General Information about the Unemployment Insurance Program:

https://www.getkansasbenefits.gov/Home.aspx

To file a UI claim online:

https://www.getkansasbenefits.gov/Home.aspx

To file a claim by telephone number:

https://www.getkansasbenefits.gov/Home.aspx

To check the status or get information on your claim:
http://www.getkansasbenefits.gov/


Coronavirus update: Kansas is providing updates on Unemployment Insurance changes related to COVID-19 here:
https://www.dol.ks.gov/covid19response

 

For Businesses

The St. Louis Economic Development Partnership (SLEDP), and the St. Louis Development Corporation are offering a zero percent interest loan program for small businesses in the city of St. Louis and St. Louis County that have sustained economic damage due to the COVID-19 crisis. Loan details can be found hereApply here.

SLEDP has also set up a Small Business Resource Hotline at 314-615-1777 to help connect you to needed resources.

The STL Regional Chamber has also set up a comprehensive site, which will link you to essential information, business resources, regional resources, travel updates, and more: 
COVID-19 Resources

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is offering designated states and territories low-interest Economic Injury Disaster Loans for working capital to small businesses suffering substantial economic injury as a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19).Small businesses can submit an application to SBA for a disaster loan here.

SBA Coronavirus Assistance

To help business owners prepare for the changing circumstances associated with COVID-19, the Missouri SBDC suggests the following steps to take for businesses financially impacted:

MO SBDC Recommendations

People with Lupus Are at Higher Risk

COVID-19 is a new disease and there is limited information regarding risk factors for severe disease. Based on currently available information and clinical expertise, older adults and people of any age who have serious underlying medical conditions might be at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19.

Based on what we know now, those at high-risk for severe illness from COVID-19 are:

 

People of all ages with underlying medical conditions are at higher risk for severe illness, particularly if the underlying medical conditions are not well controlled. This includes people with:

  • Chronic lung disease or moderate to severe asthma
  • Serious heart conditions
  • Conditions that can cause a person to be immunocompromised, including cancer treatment, smoking, bone marrow or organ transplantation, immune deficiencies, poorly controlled HIV or AIDS, and prolonged use of corticosteroids and other immune weakening medications.
  • Severe obesity (body mass index [BMI] of 40 or higher)
  • Diabetes
  • Chronic kidney disease and who are undergoing dialysis
  • Liver disease