A study published in JCO Clinical Cancer Informatics found significant decreases nationwide in the number of patients being seen for cancer-related care due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Researchers from the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center – Jefferson Health (SKCC) found significant decreases nationwide in the number of patients being seen for cancer-related care as a result of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19).
The study, published in JCO Clinical Cancer Informatics, found the most significant decline in encounters to be those related to new cancer incidences, including screening, initial diagnosis, second opinion, and treatment initiation appointments.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has had a tremendous immediate impact on the world, and it is clear that there will be effects for years to come,” the authors wrote. “Ultimately, these observed trends have serious implications for future cancer care and validate the need to study and monitor the effect of COVID-19 mitigation on cancer diagnosis and treatment moving forward.
In an interview with CancerNetwork®, Christopher McNair, PhD, director of Cancer Informatics and assistant professor in the Department of Cancer Biology at SKCC, discussed the study findings and the possible future implications for patients with cancer should these trends continue.
This segment comes from the CancerNetwork® portion of the MJH Life Sciences Medical World News, airing daily on all MJH Life Sciences channels.
London JW, Fazio-Eynullayeva E, Palchuk MB, Sankey P, McNair C. Effects of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Cancer-Related Patient Encounters. JCO Clinical Cancer Informatics. doi: 10.1200/CCI.20.00068