Your biologic treatment support team

Confused about how to use your medication? Got questions about your treatment? You're not alone! Your support team can help. What's a support team, you ask? Your support team can be made up of your rheumatologist, family doctor, nurse, pharmacist, and other healthcare professionals who help you manage your rheumatoid arthritis (RA). If you're using a biologic medication, you may also have a toll-free support line to help you with medication questions and concerns. Your support team is there to help you with all aspects of your treatment.

Medication-specific support
Most pharmaceutical companies that make biologic medications provide support programs to help you to obtain and use the medications. These services may include:

  • toll-free help lines with access to trained healthcare professionals to answer your questions
  • home delivery of the medications
  • access to trained nurses to teach you or your caregivers how to inject the medication
  • newsletters
  • reminders to help you remember to take your medication
  • travel coolers (for transporting medications) and sharps containers (for needle and syringe disposal)

Services may differ among support programs for each medication. Check with your doctor or nurse to find out more.

Self-injection support
Does the idea of giving yourself an injection sound a bit scary? Don't worry – it's normal to be a bit nervous at first. But you can overcome your fears. Here's how:

  • Get trained. Before you start taking the medication, you will be trained by a doctor, nurse, or other healthcare professional to give yourself the injection.
  • Practice until you're comfortable. Practice with your healthcare professional until you are confident that you understand the process and will be able to do the injections at home.
  • Get help from those around you. Have a family member or caregiver assist you until you are completely comfortable.
  • Don't be afraid to ask for help! If you have questions when you get home, the companies that make the biologics usually provide a toll-free number to talk to a qualified nurse or other healthcare professional who can help you. Help is never far away and is always available at your convenience. 

While some anxiety is normal, a few people will experience severe anxiety that interferes with their ability to use the medication. Fortunately, help is available. Self-injection anxiety counselling can help. This counselling, provided by trained nurses, helps people identify and overcome the causes of their anxiety. If you want to use a biologic at home, but you're worried about self-injection, check with your nurse or rheumatologist for more information.

Don't let fear of needles prevent you from using the medication that's best for you! Talk to your rheumatologist, nurse, or toll-free support line if you have concerns.

General treatment support
Your family doctor, nurse, pharmacist, and rheumatologist are all part of your healthcare team, and are available to help you manage your rheumatoid arthritis (RA). They can help you with diagnosis, ongoing treatment, and any questions you may have. As well, they can work with your caregivers and the healthcare professionals involved in your medication-specific support program.

Got questions about your treatment? Your support team can help! Your family doctor, nurse, pharmacist, and rheumatologist are all there to assist you. Plus, toll-free support is also available for many biologic medications. If you're feeling confused, contact these professionals for help! Get the most from your RA treatment medication and ask for help when you have questions.

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