CARRA October 2020 Newsletter - Issue 1


Member Spotlight: Eyal Muscal Leads Texas Children’s Hospital Team to Tackle COVID-19 in Children

Physicians and scientists across the country and around the world are working tirelessly to treat patients with COVID-19, while working to understand the short and long-term effects of this new disease.  The Houston area has been hit particularly hard and Eyal Muscal, CARRA member and Chief of Pediatric Rheumatology at Texas Children’s Hospital, is leading a team of talented and dedicated pediatric rheumatologists who are treating pediatric patients afflicted with COVID-19 across three local campuses.

 “Dr. Muscal’s leadership and expertise provide all of us here at TCH and Baylor College of Medicine with hopefulness, as we struggle with all the unknowns and unanticipated aspects of this newly recognized disease”

            --Scott Wenderfer, MD, CARRA member and Pediatric nephrologist at Texas Children’s Hospital

Texas Children’s Hospital has produced several informative videos addressing COVID-19 in children. In these two videos, “MIS-C Roundtable Discussion” and “Kawasaki Disease and COVID-19: The Potential Link,” CARRA member, Eyal Muscal shares his expertise on the long term affects COVID-19 may have in children.

While children are less likely to get COVID-19 than adults, MIS-C is a post-infectious condition that can occur in children (roughly 1%) who have contracted COVID-19. MIS-C has some similar characteristics to Kawasaki disease, however, there are some key differences, both in clinical manifestations and treatment approaches. Eyal and his team at Texas Children’s Hospital have developed the following videos to answer some common questions they have received from parents and patients about COVID-19.

Click here to watch the full “MIS-C Roundtable Discussion” video.

Click here to watch the full “Kawasaki Disease and COVID-19: The Potential Link” video.

Thank you to all our members who are helping patients and families stay safe and healthy during this difficult time.

CARRA Elections: Call for Nominations

Nominations Due: October 23 & December 18

CARRA is now accepting nominations for open positions on the CARRA Steering Committee, Elections Committee, Ethics Committee and Finance Committee. This is a great opportunity for our members to get more involved in CARRA and/or step into leadership positions! Nominate yourself or another CARRA member for the following positions:

Steering Committee (3 year terms, 7/1/2021-6/30/2024):

Other Positions:

  • Elections Committee (2 positions)
    • The Elections Committee is responsible for oversight of the CARRA election process, including working with staff to develop and implement the election timeline, recruiting candidates for open positions, and validating the voting results.
    • Term: 3 years (7/1/21 – 6/30/24)
  • Ethics Committee (4 positions)
    • The Ethics Committee provides assistance to the Board to enable CARRA to operate according to the highest ethical standards and in accordance with applicable laws and regulations.
    • Term: 3 years (7/1/21 – 6/30/24)
  • Finance Committee (3 positions)
    • As an advisory committee to the Board of Directors, the Finance Committee assists and supports the financial and tax practices of the organization. This includes assisting the Board with updating its fiscal policies and procedures; developing the annual budget; ensuring accurate tracking and analysis of financial performance, trends, and other issues; and assisting the Board with conformance to relevant financial and tax rules and regulations, as well as Board policies
    • Term: 2 years (7/1/21 – 6/30/23)

Two Separate Elections

The elections for the Steering Committee Chair open positions will be held prior to the elections for the Steering Committee Vice Chair and other CARRA committee open positions.

  • October 23: Nominations for Steering Committee Chair positions are due.
  • December 18: Nominations for Steering Committee Vice Chair and CARRA operational committee open positions are due

View the elections timeline here.




Virtual Symposium: New Drugs for Juvenile Myositis (JM)

Date: October 17, from 11am to 3pm EST

Join CARRA members Bob Colbert, Ann Reed, Jeff Dvergsten, Kaveh Ardalan and Hanna Kim as they share their expertise at Cure JM’s Virtual symposium on new drugs for JM. Session topics will include:

  • The biology, genomics and genetics of JM
  • Potential pathways that could be targeted for therapeutic intervention
  • An overview of drugs that are in clinical trials or planned to enter clinical trials in JM patients

Click here for more information and to register.

Join CARRA’s Team for the Arthritis Foundation’s Virtual Jingle Bell Run!

Once again CARRA is teaming up with our premier partner the Arthritis Foundation for the annual Jingle Bell Run.  We know it has been a difficult year for everyone and we need your support now more than ever.  Please consider donating to the CARRA Virtual Jingle Bell Run team here.  You can also contact Vincent at [email protected] and he can link your existing team to the CARRA National Team or help you start a new team. Thank you!!

Arthritis Foundation Updates


The Arthritis Foundation’s Fellowship Request for Applications is Now Open!

Application deadline: Wednesday, December 9, 2020; 5:00 PM EST 

Please be advised the opportunity noted below is only for institutions with accredited fellowship programs. It is NOT intended for individuals applying for fellowships.

The Arthritis Foundation is seeking applications from institutional program directors. The RFA is particularly interested in novel approaches in training to prepare the next generation of rheumatologists to meet the evolving needs of the community. For adult programs, the focus is on creation of new ACGME accredited positions. This RFA does not require new slots to be generated for pediatric and combined pediatric-adult programs. For application and instructions, please visit and scroll to the bottom to the blue "See All Opportunities" button, and search for Arthritis. The instruction can be downloaded by clicking the paper icon to the right of the words "Rheumatology Fellowship Training". After reviewing the criteria, those who intend to apply should email [email protected] to give the Arthritis Foundation a heads up, with the subject line: Fellowship - Yes. For questions or concerns about ProposalCentral, please email [email protected].


Connect on Campus

Connect on Campus is an Arthritis Foundation program conducted in partnership with Alpha Omicron Pi (AOII) to connect college students with arthritis and related rheumatic diseases to resources and support through the Live Yes! Arthritis Network. This Network guides young adults to opportunities for connection with others, both online and in-person* (*when it is safe to do so!) and to tools and resources to assist with navigating college life while managing arthritis. Click here to learn more.

Important Dates and Deadlines