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COVID-19

Single-Institution Study Finds Decrease in Cancer Screenings, Diagnoses During the First Wave of the COVID-19 Pandemic

Researchers have documented a substantial decline in cancer and precancer diagnoses at the Northeast's largest health-care system (Massachusetts General Brigham) during the first peak of the COVID-19 pandemic due to a drop in the number of cancer screening tests performed. These findings were...

COVID-19
Integrative Oncology

COVID-19 and Integrative Oncology: Meeting the Global Challenges of Health Equity

Guest Editor’s Note: Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the Society for Integrative Oncology (SIO) held its 2020 international conference in a virtual format. It focused on key issues of health disparities in integrative cancer care, innovative integrative oncology service delivery models, and...

COVID-19
Breast Cancer
Survivorship

Italian Study of Electronic Medical Record–Assisted Telephone Follow-up of Breast Cancer Survivors During the COVID-19 Pandemic

In an Italian single-institution study reported in JCO Oncology Practice, Merz et al evaluated the use of electronic medical record–assisted telephone follow-up (E-TFU) of breast cancer survivors to minimize hospital exposure over a 3-month period during the COVID-19 pandemic. The strategy was...

COVID-19

COA Submits Letter to Governors, Public Health Officials to Request Independent Oncology Practices Be Given Priority Approval to Administer COVID-19 Vaccines

Today, leadership from the Community Oncology Alliance (COA) sent a letter urging the nation's governors and public health officials to prioritize supplying cancer treatment practices with COVID-19 vaccines and allowing the practices to administer the vaccines. The letter, signed by Kashyap Patel,...

COVID-19

FDA Issues Alert Regarding SARS-CoV-2 Viral Mutation to Health-Care Providers and Clinical Laboratory Staff

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is alerting clinical laboratory staff and health-care providers that it is monitoring the potential impact of viral mutations, including an emerging variant from the United Kingdom known as the B.1.1.7 variant, on authorized SARS-CoV-2 molecular tests....

COVID-19

Effect of COVID-19 Infection on Cancer Management

In a study reported in JCO Oncology Practice, Wu et al found that almost two-thirds of patients undergoing active cancer management who were diagnosed with COVID-19 over a 4-month period in 2020 had significant delays in planned management.   Study Details The retrospective study involved data on...

Solid Tumors
Hematologic Malignancies
COVID-19

Immune Response to COVID-19 Reduced in Patients With Hematologic Malignancies vs Solid Tumors

Patients with hematologic malignancies varied in their immune response to COVID-19, and some struggled to clear the infection, according to new research published by Abdul-Jawad in Cancer Cell. In contrast, most patients with solid tumors—even those with advanced cancer—were shown to be able to...

COVID-19

SARS-CoV-2 Infection Among Patients in Italy Undergoing Active Cancer Treatment

In a retrospective study reported as a research letter in JAMA Oncology, Aschele et al found that the incidence of SARS-CoV-2 infection was 0.68% among a large population of patients receiving anticancer treatment in Italy over an approximately 3.5-month period in 2020. Study Details The study...

COVID-19

FDA Statement on Following the Authorized Dosing Schedules for COVID-19 Vaccines

On January 4, U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Commissioner Stephen M. Hahn, MD, and Director of the FDA’s Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research Peter Marks, MD, PhD, issued the following statement on FDA-authorized dosing schedules for each COVID-19 vaccine. Two different mRNA...

COVID-19

FDA Issues Emergency Use Authorization for Second COVID-19 Vaccine

On December 18, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued an emergency use authorization (EUA) for the second vaccine for the prevention of COVID-19 caused by SARS-CoV-2. The emergency use authorization allows the Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine to be distributed in the United States for use in...

COVID-19

Risk of COVID-19 Infection in Patients With Cancer: Effect of Time of Diagnosis and Race

In a study reported in JAMA Oncology, Wang et al found that patients with cancer were at a greater risk of being infected with COVID-19 and having worse outcomes vs patients without cancer. Risk was greatest among patients with a more recent diagnosis and was even further exacerbated among Black...

COVID-19

NIH RADx-rad Grants Support Investigation of Novel COVID-19 Testing and Surveillance Approaches

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has awarded over $107 million to support new, nontraditional approaches and reimagined uses of existing tools to address gaps in COVID-19 testing and surveillance. The program will also develop platforms that can be deployed in future outbreaks of COVID-19...

Lung Cancer
COVID-19

Effect of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Lung Cancer Screening

Reporting on how deferred care worsened outcomes for patients with lung cancer when the COVID-19 pandemic first surged in the spring of 2020, Robert M. Van Haren, MD, MSPH, FACS, and colleagues explained that they have identified a framework that could help people with serious health conditions...

COVID-19

Anthony Fauci, MD, Encourages Patients With Cancer to Receive COVID-19 Vaccine

The American Society of Hematology (ASH) President Stephanie Lee, MD, MPH, sat down with Anthony Fauci, MD, Director of the National Institutes of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) and medical advisor to President-Elect Joseph Biden, for a virtual fireside chat about COVID-19 and cancer at...

Hematologic Malignancies
COVID-19

ASH Registry: Treasure Trove of Data on COVID-19 and Hematologic Malignancies

The ASH Research Collaborative COVID-19 Registry for Hematology provides up-to-date information on outcomes and the course of illness for a group of patients with hematologic malignancies and COVID-19.1 In general, registry data showed that hematologic malignancies increase the risk of severity of...

COVID-19

Life and Death Under COVID-19

Victoria was a 79-year-old woman living alone in a London suburb. Having no children of her own, she visited us regularly here in the United States. She was one of three sisters and my sister-in-law. I knew her for more than 50 years, and she always reminded me of Audrey Hepburn, both in looks and ...

COVID-19

Changes in Care and Well-Being Among Patients With Cancer During Initial Stage of the COVID-19 Pandemic

In a Dutch study reported in JAMA Oncology, van de Poll-Franse et al found that a substantial proportion of patients with cancer had changes in care within 4 to 6 weeks after the first announcement of a COVID-19–related lockdown. Patients with cancer surveyed reported levels of quality of life,...

COVID-19

FDA Authorizes Antigen Test as First Over-the-Counter, Fully At-Home Diagnostic Test for COVID-19

On December 15, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued an emergency use authorization (EUA) for the first over-the-counter, fully at-home diagnostic test for COVID-19. The Ellume COVID-19 Home Test is a rapid, lateral-flow antigen test, a type of test that runs a liquid sample along a...

COVID-19

FDA Issues Emergency Use Authorization for First COVID-19 Vaccine

On December 11, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued the first emergency use authorization (EUA) for a vaccine for the prevention of COVID-19 caused by SARS-CoV-2 in individuals aged 16 and older. The EUA allows the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine to be distributed in the United...

Issues in Oncology
COVID-19

Potential Impact of State Government Crisis Standards-of-Care Guidelines on Resource Allocation for Patients With Cancer

In a study reported in JAMA Oncology, Hantel et al found that among U.S. states with crisis standards-of-care guidelines, 55% deprioritized some patients with cancer in resource allocation and 26% included cancer-related categorical exclusions. As stated by the investigators, “State crisis...

COVID-19

Expert Point of View: Ramesh Rengan, MD, PhD

Formal discussant of this trial, Ramesh Rengan, MD, PhD, Professor and Chair, Department of Radiation Oncology, University of Washington, and Professor, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, commented: “My interpretation in the follow-up period is that low-dose radiation therapy is...

COVID-19

Low-Dose Radiotherapy for COVID-19–Related Pneumonia

Whole-lung low-dose radiation therapy led to quicker recovery from COVID-19–related pneumonia in hospitalized and oxygen-dependent patients compared with matched controls treated with best supportive care and physician’s choice of anti–COVID-19 therapy, according to the results of a small trial.1...

COVID-19

How Did the COVID-19 Pandemic Affect Initiation of Cancer Treatment in England?

In a retrospective analysis reported in The Lancet Oncology, Clark et al found that new prescriptions for systemic anticancer treatment in England initially declined significantly after societal lockdown in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, they then increased to higher than prepandemic...

COVID-19

ASCO Issues Comprehensive Recommendations to Strengthen Cancer Care and Research During and Beyond the COVID-19 Pandemic

On December 8, ASCO issued comprehensive recommendations to guide the cancer community’s eventual recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. By applying lessons learned during the pandemic, ASCO’s Road to Recovery Report: Learning From the COVID-19 Experience to Improve Clinical Research and Cancer Care...

Hematologic Malignancies
COVID-19

ASH 2020: Environmental Surface Testing for Presence of SARS-CoV-2 in Inpatient and Outpatient Hematology/Oncology Settings

A research team from Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey evaluated the presence of SARS-CoV-2 on various environmental surfaces in outpatient and inpatient hematology/oncology settings. The study revealed extremely low detection of SARS-CoV-2 on environmental surfaces across multiple outpatient...

Hematologic Malignancies
COVID-19

ASH 2020: Vital Information on Patients With COVID-19 and Hematologic Malignancies Provided by ASH Research Collaborative Data Hub

The ASH Research Collaborative COVID-19 Registry for Hematology provides up-to-date information on outcomes and the course of illness for a group of patients with hematologic malignancies and COVID-19. In general, registry data showed that hematologic malignancies increase the risk of severity of...

COVID-19
Immunotherapy

ASH 2020: SARS-Cov-2 Multivirus-Specific T Cells for the Treatment of Hospitalized Patients With COVID-19

Researchers have successfully built banks of SARS-CoV-2–specific T cells obtained from people who recovered from the virus that are now poised to be used as an experimental treatment in patients hospitalized with COVID-19. This T cell–based therapy may represent a step forward in the search for...

Geriatric Oncology
COVID-19

The COVID-19 Pandemic and Cancer Care for Older Patients in the United States: Effect on Diagnosis and Treatment

In a study of data from a Medicare fee-for-service population reported in JCO Clinical Cancer Informatics, Debra Patt, MD, PhD, MBA, and colleagues found that the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in a “substantial decrease in cancer screenings, visits, therapy, and surgeries among older patients with ...

Issues in Oncology
COVID-19
Hematologic Malignancies
Immunotherapy

Study Explores Duration of Shedding of Viable SARS-CoV-2 in Patients With Cancer After Immunosuppressive Therapy

In a single-institution study reported in a letter to the editor in The New England Journal of Medicine, Aydillo et al found that SARS-CoV-2 RNA could be detected in patients with COVID-19 receiving immunosuppressive treatment for cancer for as long as 78 days after the onset of virus symptoms. The ...

COVID-19

FDA Announces Advisory Committee Meeting to Discuss Second COVID-19 Vaccine Candidate

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has scheduled a meeting of its Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee (VRBPAC) for December 17 to discuss the request for emergency use authorization (EUA) for a COVID-19 vaccine from Moderna Inc. “In keeping with the FDA’s commitment ...

COVID-19

What Is ‘Quality Oncology Care’ During the COVID-19 Pandemic?

My patient with metastatic colon cancer was sitting across from me after being absent for several months. His cancer had been under excellent control on chemotherapy, but now he was having worse pain and shortness of breath. Despite our calls, he had not kept his appointments. We were 6 feet apart, ...

COVID-19

Impact of COVID-19 on Cancer Care in India

With the announcement of a complete nationwide lockdown on March 25, 2020, to prevent the spread of COVID-19, a lot of unprecedented events came into being in India. The National Health Mission reported a 69% reduction in measles, mumps, and rubella vaccination in children; a 21% reduction in...

COVID-19

FDA Announces Advisory Committee Meeting to Discuss COVID-19 Vaccine Candidate

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has scheduled a meeting of its Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee (VRBPAC) for December 10, 2020, to discuss the request for emergency use authorization (EUA) of a COVID-19 vaccine from Pfizer, in partnership with BioNTech. “The...

COVID-19

Emergency Use Authorization Request to Be Submitted to FDA Today for COVID-19 Vaccine

Pfizer Inc and BioNTech SE announced they will submit a request today to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for Emergency Use Authorization of their mRNA vaccine candidate, BNT162b2 against SARS-CoV-2, which will potentially enable use of the vaccine in high-risk populations in the United...

covid-19

Dafna Bar-Sagi, PhD, on COVID-19: How Cancer Researchers Can Help Address the Challenges

Dafna Bar-Sagi, PhD, of New York University Langone Medical Center, summarizes a panel discussion she moderated on skills the cancer research community brings to bear on the coronavirus pandemic, how the influx of funding will affect future priorities, and ways to capitalize on the surge of interdisciplinary efforts to address medical issues. The panel was composed of: Ann D. Barker, Chief Strategy Officer at the Ellison Institute of University of Southern California.  Previously, Ann served as the Principal Deputy Director of the National Cancer Institute for strategic scientific initiatives.   Tyler Jacks, Director of Koch Institute for Integrative Cancer Research at MIT. Tom Lynch, President and Director of Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. Shiva Malek, Senior Director and Principal Scientist of Discovery Oncology at Genentech. J.T. Poirier, a junior faculty from the Perlmutter Cancer Center at NYU Langone Health.

COVID-19

FDA Issues Emergency Use Authorization for First COVID-19 Test for Self-Testing at Home

On November 17, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued an emergency use authorization (EUA) for the first COVID-19 diagnostic test for self-testing at home. The Lucira COVID-19 All-In-One Test Kit, which provides rapid results, is a molecular (real-time loop mediated amplification...

Supportive Care
Integrative Oncology
COVID-19

Virtual Mind-Body Services for Patients With Cancer During the COVID-19 Pandemic

The ASCO Post’s Integrative Oncology series is intended to facilitate the availability of evidence-based information on integrative and complementary therapies sometimes used by patients with cancer. In this installment, Jun J. Mao, MD, MSCE, and Jyothirmai Gubili, MS, focus on the role of virtual...

COVID-19

Survey Finds Patients With Cancer May Be Less Likely to Enroll in Clinical Trials During the COVID-19 Pandemic

A portion of patients with cancer may be less likely to enroll in a clinical trial due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. According to a report published as a research letter by Mark E. Fleury, PhD, and colleagues in JAMA Oncology, nearly one in five patients with cancer surveyed said the...

COVID-19

Serial COVID-19 Screening in Asymptomatic Patients Receiving Treatment for Cancer

In a United Arab Emirates single-institution study reported as a research letter in JAMA Oncology, Al-Shamsi et al found a high rate of COVID-19 infection among asymptomatic patients with solid tumors undergoing cancer treatment. Study Details The study included 109 patients receiving treatment for ...

COVID-19

COVID-19’s Impact on Cancer Care Around the World: Perspectives From the ASCO International Affairs Committee

As the world continues to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, ASCO is committed to providing the most current information and resources to its members and the larger oncology community to help ensure that patients with cancer receive high-quality care. Here, members of the ASCO International Affairs...

Issues in Oncology
COVID-19

Results From ASCO’s 2020 National Cancer Opinions Survey

As in past years, the results from ASCO’s 2020 National Cancer Opinions Survey showed a startling dichotomy in the perceptions of Americans on a variety of health-care issues. As expected, the two major events this year, the COVID-19 pandemic and a national reckoning over racial injustice,...

COVID-19

Impact of COVID-19 on Well-Being in the Oncology Workforce: COVID-NOW Survey Results

The results of a survey of 1,038 doctors, nurses, pharmacists, administrators, and allied health professionals (such dietitians and physiotherapists) working in oncology in the United Kingdom’s National Health Service (NHS) during the spring wave of COVID-19 were presented by Susana N. Banerjee,...

COVID-19

UK-Based Study Finds Evidence of COVID-19 Infection, Antibody Presence in Oncology Health-Care Staff

A study of oncology staff carried out immediately after the spring peak of the COVID-19 pandemic in the United Kingdom indicated that many had been infected with the coronavirus, including those who did not show any symptoms. The study—presented by Favara et al at the NCRI (National Cancer Research ...

COVID-19

Survey Shows Many Patients With Cancer Willing to Take Part in Clinical Trials Despite Coronavirus

Patient Power, a patient-driven cancer news organization, reported that a majority of patients with cancer still want to participate in clinical trials despite the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a recent survey of 1,485 patients. The Patient Power COVID-19 Cancer Trial Survey, the second Patient...

COVID-19

Did You Know ASCO Has Resources on COVID-19 for People With Cancer?

ASCO’s award-winning Cancer.Net blog has been providing updated content and resources on COVID-19 for people with cancer since the pandemic started. Send your patients to www.cancer.net/blog for trusted COVID-19 information, financial resources, and more. All content is available in multiple...

Issues in Oncology
COVID-19

How Telemedicine Is Impacting Oncology Care During the COVID-19 Pandemic

The expansion of telemedicine has been one of the most important developments during the COVID-19 pandemic. Here, we discuss some of the legal and ethical dimensions of expanding telemedicine services in oncology practices. As Royce et al discussed in a recent JAMA Oncology article, Congress...

COVID-19

COVID-19, Cancer, and the Older Adult

An inspiring case series of fit patients aged 98 and older who recovered from hospitalization for COVID-19, published by Huang et al, reminds us that older age may not be a barrier to recovery.1 On behalf of the Cancer and Aging Research Group, we do not support “ageism” in the care of older...

COVID-19

FDA Approves Remdesivir for Patients With COVID-19 Requiring Hospitalization

On October 22, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved the antiviral drug remdesivir (Veklury) for use in adult and pediatric patients 12 years of age and older and weighing at least 40 kg for the treatment of COVID-19 requiring hospitalization. Remdesivir should only be administered...

issues in oncology
covid-19

Cardinale B. Smith, MD, PhD, on Telehealth Disparities During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Cardinale B. Smith, MD, PhD, of the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, discusses findings showing Black, Hispanic, and Asian patients with cancer used telehealth less often during the COVID-19 pandemic than White patients with cancer, a negative trend that will become more problematic as this method of care continues to increase through subsequent waves of coronavirus infection and plays a larger role in standard treatment (Abstract 87).

Issues in Oncology
COVID-19

Advanced Practitioner Leadership in Times of Crisis

In 2020, health-care providers from all disciplines are facing challenges never before encountered in the modern era of medicine. Advanced practitioners (APs) are playing critical roles in developing protocols, managing health-care teams, and delivering hands-on patient care. JADPRO Live, the...

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