Recommendations to Safely Access Cancer Screening & Care During the Covid Pandemic

Recommendations to Safely Access Cancer Screening & Care During the Covid Pandemic

—Cancer Doesn’t Wait — Neither Should You—

It’s a startling statistic, that COVID-19 has become the third leading cause of death in the United States in 2020. Still, cancer remains the #2 leading cause of death in the U.S.1

At the moment,

the impact of the pandemic could be upwards of 10,000 deaths from breast cancer and colorectal cancer in the next decade because of COVID-19 screening delays.2

What is one of the biggest concerns of health officials? People waiting to make appointments to go see a doctor. People believing that if they don’t have symptoms or a family history of some types of cancer, then they aren’t at risk. Health officials empathize that cancer hasn’t stopped, and neither should you.

The best tool we have in fighting cancer is early detection.

That means getting routine screenings and tests that can identify signs of disease early on when cancer is most treatable. People may be putting off their routine healthcare out of fear of exposure to the coronavirus. In fact, even pre-pandemic, people were reluctant to schedule cancer screenings, and now, the pandemic has given them another compelling reason to put off their screenings even longer.3

Public health officials and healthcare providers understand delivering care during a pandemic can be a big challenge, and that healthcare providers need to put measures in place to limit COVID risk and people need to feel safe going to a doctor’s office for their annual screenings for breast and colorectal cancer.

So, amid the uncertainty of the pandemic,

health officials from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, American Cancer Society and National Comprehensive Cancer Network want to encourage people to call their doctor and find out what they need to know to be safe while taking care of their health. COVID varies by region making it critical to call your provider to learn about safety protocols that have been put in place by your local provider and how and when to safely access care.

Join me in a recent interview

with Lisa Richardson, MD MPH, Director, Division of Cancer Prevention and Control, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Robert Carlson, MD, Chief Executive Officer, National Comprehensive Cancer Network to learn why a pandemic is no time to put your health on the back burner.

See the entire interview here:  CDC Cancer Screening – MichiganMamaNews – YouTube

For more information, go to http://www.cdc.gov/cancer or http://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus

BIO: Lisa C. Richardson, MD, MPH


Director, Division of Cancer Prevention and Control
National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Lisa C. Richardson, MD, MPH, is Director of the Division of Cancer Prevention and Control (DCPC), the largest unit within CDC’s National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion. She oversees the Division’s $355M annual budget and provides strategic leadership for DCPC’s four national programs and cancer control research. Dr. Richardson is trained as a medical oncologist. Dr. Richardson’s research concentrates on breast cancer, cancer treatment delivery, cancer health equity and access to cancer care.

Bio: Robert W. Carlson, MD

Carlson is Chief Executive Officer of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) and Professor of Medicine (emeritus) in the Division of Medical Oncology at Stanford University Medical Center. He served as Founding Chair of the NCCN Guidelines Panel for Breast Cancer, the NCCN Guidelines Panel for Breast Cancer Risk Reduction, and the NCCN Guidelines Panel for Survivorship. He is an internationally recognized expert in breast cancer and clinical practice guideline development.

Interview is courtesy:  CDC

1. COVID-19 Is Now the Third Leading Cause of Death in the U.S. – Scientific American

2. Sharpless NE. COVID-19 and cancer. Science. 2020;368(6497):1290. doi:10.1126/science.abd3377

3. https://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/935799

Cynthia Tait

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