A panel of experts in healthcare administration and delivery convened virtually during the NCCN 2021 Virtual Annual Conference to discuss the effects of the pandemic on cancer care and what the future may hold. The discussion ranged from the effects of the pandemic on screening and the implications of missing early cancers to the challenges of telemedicine, the future delivery of more in-home services, and burnout among healthcare workers as hospitals and cancer centers work to rebuild for the future.
Presenters: James E. Bachman, Kim Slusser, Thomas K. Varghese, Andrew Wagner, and moderated by Timothy Kubal
Pelin Cinar, Timothy Kubal, Alison Freifeld, Asmita Mishra, Lawrence Shulman, James Bachman, Rafael Fonseca, Hope Uronis, Dori Klemanski, Kim Slusser, Matthew Lunning, and Catherine Liu
The novel coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, was first detected as a respiratory illness in December 2019 in Wuhan City, China. Since then, coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has impacted every aspect of our lives worldwide. In a time when terms such as social distancing and flattening the curve have become a part of our vernacular, it is essential that we understand what measures can be implemented to protect our patients and healthcare workers. Undoubtedly, healthcare providers have had to rapidly alter care delivery models while simultaneously acknowledging the crucial unknowns of how these changes may affect clinical outcomes. This special feature reviews strategies on how to mitigate transmission of COVID-19 in an effort to reduce morbidity and mortality associated with the disease for patients with cancer without infection, for patients with cancer with COVID-19 infection, and for the healthcare workers caring for them, while continuing to provide the best possible cancer care. [Editor’s Note: This article includes the most current information available at time of publication; however, recommendations regarding public safety and practice may change rapidly in this situation. Individuals should get the most up to date information from the CDC website.]