Megan Sarson is Executive Officer at the Australia Haemophilia Centre Directors’ Organisation (AHCDO)
The Australia Haemophilia Centre Directors’ Organisation (AHCDO) held its first virtual Education Seminar and second virtual Annual General Meeting (AGM) in mid-October 2021.
These events are usually a time for Haemophilia Treatment Centre (HTC) clinicians to come together with colleagues and discuss issues of particular interest and although, as with everyone, we missed the face-to-face element this year, the online environment did mean that more members than usual were able to attend – and indeed, the clinicians who couldn’t attend on the day can access a recording of the Seminar through their member portal to view when convenient.
During the first session of the Education Seminar, we heard all about emicizumab (Hemlibra®). Dr Caroline Dix presented her work on emicizumab assays at the Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, noting the importance of measuring emicizumab levels to identify the development of anti-emicizumab antibodies, unusual bleeding despite good adherence and in preparation for surgery. Next up, Dr Heather Tapp presented on the treatment of Previously Untreated Patients (PUPs) with emicizumab, with a focus on the prevention and management of inhibitors. Dr Tapp noted a number of PUP emicizumab clinical trials currently underway. To close this session, Prof Huyen Tran gave an overview of which patients might be suited to treatment with emicizumab and some of the other novel therapies which are on the horizon.
The second session was led by Dr David Rabbolini who discussed his work with the Sydney Platelet Group, ranging from patient referral, collaborative lab testing to harmonize investigations and the improvement in continuity of care. He then went on to discuss how discoveries made in the laboratory can be translated back into the clinical pathway. Our final speaker of the day was AHCDO’s ABDR Senior Research Fellow, Dr Sumit Parikh, who gave an update on two research projects currently being undertaken using data from the Australia Bleeding Disorders Registry (ABDR) – one on the use of Extended Half Life (EHLs) treatment products and the second on the Haemophilia Joint Health Score assessment tool.
Professor Huyen Tran
Photo: Huyen Tran, AHCDO
Following the seminar, AHCDO held its AGM and announced a new Executive Council. Prof Huyen Tran (The Alfred, Vic) continues as AHCDO Chair and will be assisted by A/Prof Chris Barnes (Royal Children’s Hospital, Vic), Dr Simon Brown (Queensland Children’s Hospital, Qld), Dr Tina Carter (Perth Children’s Hospital, WA), Dr Stephanie P’ng (Fiona Stanley Hospital, WA) and Dr Chee Wee Tan (Royal Adelaide Hospital, SA).
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