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COVID-19

Austrian Study of SARS-CoV-2 Testing in Patients With Cancer Treated at a Tertiary Care Hospital During the COVID-19 Pandemic

In an Austrian study reported in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Berghoff et al found that 0.4% of consecutive patients with cancer treated at Medical University of Vienna tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 between March 21 and May 4, 2020, after implementation of institutional and governmental...

COVID-19

Chemotherapy and COVID-19 Outcomes in Patients With Cancer at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center

In a single-institution study reported in the  Journal of Clinical Oncology, Jee et al found that the receipt of cytotoxic chemotherapy within 35 days of COVID-19 diagnosis in patients with cancer was not associated with increased risk of severe or critical COVID-19. The investigators also...

COVID-19

Managing Cancer in Older Adults During the COVID-19 Pandemic

The COVID-19 pandemic is an additional competing risk to factor in when making decisions about anticancer treatment for older adults. It poses a potential barrier to equal and evidence-based management of cancer in this group of patients. Implementing geriatric assessments in routine clinical...

COVID-19

Repurposing Drugs for the Treatment of COVID-19

A vaccine for COVID-19 is currently the Holy Grail, but even if an effective vaccine were developed on a fast-track timetable, it may be effective in only a percentage of people, judging by existing flu vaccines, which show efficacy rates of approximately 45% and vary year by year. Until we have a...

COVID-19

Impact of Immune Checkpoint Inhibitors on COVID-19 in Patients With Cancer

In the time of COVID-19, there is much to learn about the intersection of coronavirus and cancer. One area of concern has been whether immunotherapies increase the risk of mortality in patients with cancer who also have COVID-19 infection. “To what extent immune checkpoint inhibition affects...

COVID-19

Reevaluating the Delivery of Palliative Care in the Era of COVID-19

Palliative care services are so crucial to the well-being of patients with cancer that, in 2017, ASCO updated its clinical practice guideline on the integration of palliative care into standard oncology care.1 The updated guideline recommends that all patients with advanced cancer receive dedicated ...

Breast Cancer
COVID-19

Study Finds Treatment Delays for Patients With Breast Cancer Early in the COVID-19 Pandemic

The results of an online questionnaire of 609 breast cancer survivors in the United States suggest that nearly half of patients experienced delays in care during the early weeks of the COVID-19 pandemic. The study was published by Papautsky et al in the journal Breast Cancer Research and ...

COVID-19

Updated Registry Data Confirm Higher COVID-19–Related Mortality in Patients With Cancer

“The distressing intersection of COVID-19 and cancer requires the use of large registries to acknowledge diversity,” stated Solange Peters, MD, PhD, President of the European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO), in her keynote speech at the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Virtual...

covid-19

Gabriella Pravettoni, PhD, on COVID-19 and Cancer: Psychological Effects on Patients and Oncologists

Gabriella Pravettoni, PhD, of the University of Milan, discusses the need for tailored psychological interventions to take care of oncologists, health-care workers, and patients with cancer affected by the coronavirus crisis. The interventions can help minimize burnout and post-traumatic stress disorder.

COVID-19

Study Finds Residents of Low-Income Neighborhoods Have Less Access to ICU Beds Amidst Coronavirus Pandemic

A new study published by Kanter et al in Health Affairs sheds light on another reason why the coronavirus pandemic is disproportionately affecting individuals of lower socioeconomic status: residents in low-income neighborhoods lack access to intensive care unit (ICU) beds. While the shortage of...

covid-19

Robert A. Winn, MD, on the Impact of COVID-19 on Cancer Care Among Racial and Ethnic Minorities

Robert A. Winn, MD, of Virginia Commonwealth University and the Massey Cancer Center, discusses the COVID-19 pandemic and how it is exacerbating disparities in cancer care among racial and ethnic minorities and the medically underserved who are disproportionately affected by the coronavirus (Session VSS06).

COVID-19

NCI Funds Studies of Impact of Telehealth and Telemedicine Capacity for Rural Patients Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

The National Cancer Institute (NCI) has awarded the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center–Jefferson Health (SKCC) a supplemental grant (P30) to study the role of telehealth in delivering cancer care during the COVID-19 pandemic. The project will evaluate the impact of telehealth on health outcomes, patient...

COVID-19

Improving Communication Skills for Oncology Clinicians During the COVID Pandemic

Living in the era of COVID-19 has heightened fear and anxiety among patients with cancer. On the one hand, they are at higher risk of serious COVID-related illness. On the other hand, delaying cancer-focused treatment raises concerns of disease progression. This pandemic has led to dramatic...

COVID-19

Measuring the Impact of the Plunge in Cancer Screenings During the COVID-19 Pandemic

As outbreaks of the COVID-19 pandemic spiked across the country earlier this year, federal health officials and cancer societies advised people to delay seeking routine cancer screenings, including mammograms and colonoscopies, to keep them out of medical centers and away from potential exposure to ...

covid-19

Jessica Y. Islam, PhD, MPH, on COVID-19 Preventive Behaviors Among Cancer Survivors

Jessica Y. Islam, PhD, MPH, of the UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center, discusses findings from the COVID-19 Impact Survey, which showed that cancer survivors are adhering to many of the recommended COVID-19 preventive behaviors, such as wearing masks and social distancing.

covid-19

Nancy E. Davidson, MD, on Bringing Patients With Cancer Back to the Clinic During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Nancy E. Davidson, MD, of Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, talks about a panel she moderated in which speakers discussed the importance of communicating with patients to ease their concerns about cancer care during the COVID-19 pandemic, allocating protective gear for the most vulnerable patients, increasing telehealth visits, ensuring rapid access to COVID-19 testing, and altering office space to allow for social distancing (Forum 3).

Breast Cancer
COVID-19

Increased Time to Breast Cancer Surgery May Not Impact Overall Survival for Patients With Early-Stage Disease

A new study published by Minami et al in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons found that longer time from diagnosis to surgical treatment did not lower overall survival in women with early-stage breast cancer. These findings may be reassuring for women with early-stage breast cancer who...

covid-19

Antoni Ribas, MD, PhD, on AACR Virtual Meeting: COVID-19 and Cancer Highlights

Antoni Ribas, MD, PhD, of the University of California, Los Angeles, Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center, and the President of AACR, discusses this special conference that focused on emerging data related to COVID-19 and cancer, ways in which the coronavirus pandemic has altered treatment of patients with cancer, and the impact on cancer outcomes and psychosocial disorders.

covid-19

Catherine H. Marshall, MD, MPH, on Promoting Recovery From COVID-19 Infection With Endocrine Therapy

Catherine H. Marshall, MD, MPH, of Johns Hopkins Hospital, discusses phase II trial results on bicalutamide, an oral antiandrogen used to treat prostate cancer. Bicalutamide may be helpful in downregulating the TMPRSS2 and ACE proteins needed for the SARS-CoV-2 virus; upregulating estradiol to help resolve acute lung injury; and improving outcomes in patients with COVID-19 infection (Symposium 4).

covid-19

Karen E. Knudsen, MBA, PhD, on the Challenges of Using Telehealth in Cancer Care

Karen E. Knudsen, MBA, PhD, of the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center at Jefferson Health, summarizes a panel she moderated on telehealth, which included discussion of usage in urban vs rural populations, preventing the technology from becoming a new source of disparities in cancer care, and uncertainties about reimbursement policies.

covid-19

Arthur L. Caplan, PhD, on Ethics, Cancer, and COVID-19

Arthur L. Caplan, PhD, of New York University–Langone Health, discusses the areas in cancer care that need to be improved in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, including a better definition of essential medical services based on the potential to save lives, offer good quality of life, and ease patients’ concerns about coming for treatment (Symposium 7).

COVID-19

Nationwide Trends Show Fewer Patients With Cancer in the United States Seeking Care Since Start of the COVID-19 Pandemic

Research published by London et al in JCO Clinical Cancer Informatics found significant decreases nationwide in the number of patients seen for cancer-related care as the COVID-19 pandemic progressed during the first few months of 2020. The most significant decline was seen in encounters related to ...

COVID-19

ESMO Issues Consensus on the Management of Patients With Cancer During the COVID-19 Pandemic

A European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO) interdisciplinary expert consensus paper on how to manage patients with cancer during the COVID-19 pandemic was published by Giuseppe Curigliano, MD, PhD, and colleagues in Annals of Oncology. The guidance encourages medical oncologists worldwide not...

COVID-19

Top Scientists Share Early Research on Intersection of COVID-19 and Cancer Care at AACR Virtual Meeting

The American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Virtual Meeting: COVID-19 and Cancer took place from July 20 to 22, 2020, attracting top scientific minds from around the world to present preliminary research on the ever-evolving COVID-19 pandemic and its intersection with cancer care. In an...

COVID-19
Breast Cancer
Colorectal Cancer
Gastroesophageal Cancer
Lung Cancer

Modeling Study Aims to Estimate the Effect of the COVID-19 Pandemic on Cancer Deaths in England

In a population-based modeling study reported in The Lancet Oncology, Maringe et al estimated that delays in diagnosis due to the COVID-19 pandemic could result in 3,291 to 3,621 additional deaths from breast, colorectal, esophageal, and lung cancers within 5 years. As stated by the investigators,...

COVID-19

Are Patients With a Longer-Established Diagnosis of Cancer at Higher Risk for More Severe Infection or Death From COVID-19?

According to research published by Russell et al in Frontiers in Oncology, patients with a longer-established diagnosis of cancer are at increased risk for more severe infection with COVID-19, as well as death from the virus. Patients of Asian ethnicity or who were receiving palliative treatment...

COVID-19

Two Cohort Studies Identify Risk Factors for Mortality in Patients With Cancer and COVID-19

Two studies recently reported in The Lancet have identified risk factors for mortality among patients with cancer and COVID-19.1,2 As reported by Lennard Y.W. Lee, DPhil, of the Institute of Cancer and Genomic Sciences, University of Birmingham, and colleagues,1 a UK prospective cohort study...

COVID-19
Solid Tumors
Hematologic Malignancies

In Case You Missed It: Quick Takes on Novel Therapies for Solid and Hematologic Malignancies

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, oncology providers from around the world had to forgo their annual trip to McCormick Place—but the show did go on. We all realized important research can still be presented, clinicians and fellow researchers will still listen, and ASCO presentations will still...

COVID-19

AACR Holds COVID-19 and Cancer Virtual Meeting

The American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) hosted a virtual meeting on COVID-19 and cancer earlier this month (July 20–22, 2020). The virtual event, “COVID-19 and Cancer,” featured presentations from leaders in the fight against the pandemic, including three keynote lectures. In an opening ...

COVID-19

The Need for Solid Data During a Global Pandemic

The rapid outbreak of COVID-19 disease on a global scale found the community of clinicians and scientists largely unprepared to face the devastating effects of the pandemic. The stress on health-care systems revealed their weaknesses and brought about associated financial crises. Defining the...

COVID-19

Updated CCC19 Data Offer Insights on Treatment for Patients With Cancer and COVID-19 Infection

Newly released data on treatment outcomes of patients with cancer infected with COVID-19 revealed a racial disparity in access to remdesivir, an antiviral drug that has been shown to shorten hospital stays, and increased mortality associated with dexamethasone, a steroid that has had the opposite...

COVID-19

Study Finds Higher Risk for COVID-19 Infection Among Minorities and Patients With Cancer

According to the latest data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Native American or Alaska Native and non-Hispanic Black people have the highest rates of hospitalization or death from COVID-19, followed by Hispanics and Latinos. A large population-based study using a smartphone app ...

hematologic malignancies
covid-19

Miguel-Angel Perales, MD, and Syed A. Abutalib, MD, on Bone Marrow Transplants During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Syed A. Abutalib, MD, of Cancer Treatment Centers of America, talks with Miguel-Angel Perales, MD, of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, about the challenges and concerns related to transplants for patients with hematologic malignancies who are particularly vulnerable to infection with the coronavirus. Recorded July 13, 2020.

COVID-19

In Keynote Lecture, Anthony Fauci, MD, Explores What We Know About COVID-19 and What’s Being Done to Combat It

Kicking off the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) Virtual Meeting: COVID-19 and Cancer earlier this week, Anthony Fauci, MD, gave the keynote lecture, “Coronavirus Infections: More Than Just the Common Cold.” As Dr. Fauci told listeners, “[COVID-19]—and other infectious...

COVID-19
Survivorship

Cancer Survivors Are Adhering to COVID-19–Related Preventive Behaviors, but Continuity of Care May Be Impacted

People of any age with serious underlying health conditions are at greater risk for contracting the coronavirus, and cancer survivors are particularly vulnerable to becoming infected with COVID-19, since many cancer therapies can lead to immunosuppression. To reduce exposure to the virus, the...

COVID-19

Experimental COVID-19 Vaccine Generates Immune Response, Deemed Safe in Phase I Trial

According to a press release from the National Institutes of Health, an investigational vaccine designed to protect against SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19—mRNA-1273—was generally well tolerated and prompted neutralizing antibody activity in healthy adults. These interim results were...

COVID-19

FDA Collaborating on Use of Real-World Data to Inform COVID-19 Response Effort

On June 18, 2020, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) took an additional step in harnessing real-world data to help inform the agency’s overall response to the COVID-19 public health emergency. The FDA announced its participation in the COVID-19 Diagnostics Evidence Accelerator, a...

COVID-19

A Visiting Resident Oncologist’s Training During the COVID-19 Pandemic

A visiting away elective is a resident’s designated time to visit another academic program to foster the growth of medical knowledge through patient care from the perspective of another health-care system and educational experience. The time dedicated to make this dream happen is grueling. First...

COVID-19

ASCO COVID-19 Registry: Acceptable for MIPS Improvement Activity

ASCO’s Survey on COVID-19 in Oncology Registry (ASCO Registry) is an acceptable clinical trial registry for the attestation of the high-weighted practice Improvement Activity, “COVID-19 Clinical Trials Related to the Emergency Response & Preparedness,” under the Centers for Medicare &...

COVID-19

Guidance Available on Telemedicine Coverage During COVID-19 Pandemic

Effective for services starting March 1, 2020, and for the duration of the COVID-19 emergency, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will reimburse for telehealth services for all beneficiaries. To help explain this and other changes to telehealth coverage related to the pandemic,...

COVID-19

2020 ASCO Presidential Address Focuses on ‘Unite and Conquer: Accelerating Progress Together’

The world is grappling with a pandemic and we are all adjusting to a new reality. Fewer handshakes, more masks. Fewer hugs, more fear. COVID-19 has tested us, challenged us, changed us. It’s changed the way we look, the way we work, the way we socialize. It’s changed us, but it can’t stop us. It...

COVID-19

A Visiting Resident Oncologist’s Training During the COVID-19 Pandemic

A visiting away elective is a resident’s designated time to visit another academic program to foster the growth of medical knowledge through patient care from the perspective of another health-care system and educational experience. The time dedicated to make this dream happen is grueling. First is ...

Lung Cancer
COVID-19

Mortality Risk in Patients With COVID-19 and Thoracic Malignancies: Initial Report From the TERAVOLT Registry Study

As reported in The Lancet Oncology by Marina C. Garassino, MD, and colleagues, initial findings from the Thoracic Cancers International COVID-19 Collaboration (TERAVOLT) registry study have identified potential factors associated with increased risk of mortality in patients infected with COVID-19...

COVID-19

COVID-19 and Patients With Cancer: A Call to Action for Trainees

As oncology trainees, we develop skills to synthesize complex data and communicate this information with empathy as we accompany our patients through the trenches of a cancer diagnosis. With the current COVID-19 pandemic, an unprecedented layer of challenges has surfaced, as our patients who are...

COVID-19

Study Identifies Potential Approach to Treat Severe Respiratory Distress in Patients With COVID-19

Early data from a clinical study published in Science Immunology1 suggest that blocking the Bruton’s tyrosine kinase (BTK) protein provided clinical benefit to a small group of patients with severe COVID-19 infection.1 Roschewski et al observed that the off-label use of the BTK inhibitor...

COVID-19

ASCO Survey on Early Impact of COVID-19 on Performance of Oncology Clinical Trials

In an article published in JCO Oncology Practice, David Waterhouse, MD, MPH, of Oncology Hematology Care, Cincinnati, Ohio, and colleagues presented the results of a recent ASCO survey of clinical programs on the early impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the performance of oncology clinical...

COVID-19

Results of a COVID-19 and Cancer Consortium (CCC19) Cohort Study

As reported in The Lancet by Kuderer et al, a cohort study using the COVID-19 and Cancer Consortium (CCC19) database has shown that increased risk of severe COVID-19 in patients with cancer is associated with such factors as age, comorbidities, performance status, hematologic malignancy, and...

COVID-19

Factors Associated With COVID-19 Infection Severity in Patients With Cancer: Wuhan City Study

In a retrospective cohort study reported in The Lancet Oncology, Tian et al identified factors associated with severity of illness in patients with cancer hospitalized for COVID-19 over a 2-month period in Wuhan. Study Details The study included all patients aged ≥ 18 years with any type of solid...

COVID-19

UKCCMP Prospective Cohort Study of COVID-19 Mortality in Patients With Cancer

As reported by Lee et al in The Lancet, a prospective cohort study from the United Kingdom performed by the UK Coronavirus Cancer Monitoring Project (UKCCMP) has found that increased risk of COVID-19 mortality in patients with cancer is associated with such factors as age, sex, and comorbidities,...

covid-19

Jeremy L. Warner, MD, on the Clinical Impact of COVID-19 on Patients With Cancer

Jeremy L. Warner, MD, of Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center, discusses data from the COVID-19 and Cancer Consortium cohort study, which included patients with active or prior hematologic or invasive solid malignancies, reported across academic and community sites (Abstract LBA110).

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