Cancer Screening And Treatment During Pandemic
CDC and NIH along with other leading medical officials agree that washing hands, wearing masks, and social distancing are still important tools we have to stop the spread of Covid-19.
Delayed Cancer Screenings During COVID-19
Several surveys have shown that Americans are opting not to be screened for cancer during the Covid-19 pandemic. According to healthline.com, one study surveyed data from 39 health systems, and included 190 hospitals in 23 states.
The report, Delayed Cancer Screenings can be viewed here.
We’ll look at another study titled, The Impact of Covid-19 on Cancer Care: How the pandemic is delaying cancer diagnosis and treatment for American Seniors. This study found that Covid-19 is having a catastrophic impact on US cancer care for senior citizens.
The authors: Debra Patt, Lucio Gordan, Michael Diaz, et al, looked at a large medical claims clearinghouse database. The database they studied represented 5%-7% of the Medicare fee-for-service cases. They surveyed changes in the utilization of cancer care services. The goal was to gain insight into the impact of COVID-19 on the US cancer patient population.
Their conclusion: “The current impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on cancer care in the United States has resulted in decreases and delays in identifying new cancers and delivery of treatment. These problems, if unmitigated, will increase cancer morbidity and mortality for years to come.“
*If you are interested in being screened for cancer contact to your physician and request screening. Cancer screenings are regularly scheduled tests to check for cancer in people with no symptoms.
According to American Cancer Society Cancer Screening During the COVID-19 Pandemic explains that at the onset of the pandemic many cancer centers suspended their screening programs. Some centers may decide still to suspend or pause screening. These decisions are based on Covid-19 positivity rates. Decisions about suspending or restarting screening programs will vary by community as the pandemic continues.
*If you have been diagnosed with cancer of any type, contact your physician before changing any treatment schedule.
Here’s what Dr. Candace Johnson, CEO of Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center says about the measures taken to keep patients and staff as safe as possible.
MDAnderson University of Texas Tips to keep moving while stuck at home during COVID-19 pandemic.
CDC has advice for patients navigating cancer treatment during the pandemic on their web page called, Staying Healthy During and After Cancer Treatment.
The American Cancer Society has a very informative page for questions and concerns for cancer patients and caregivers.
Coronavirus, COVID-19, and Cancer
CDC offers advice to cancer patients and their caregivers on their page called, Staying Well While Staying at Home.
For further inquiry, learn what Mayo Clinic says about cancer screening and treatment during pandemic on their page titled, Routine cancer screening during coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.