CANCER Doesn’t Care about COVID Educational Campaign
ALERT: Hospitals, Patients and the Economy can suffer long-term consequences from delayed or neglected care due to COVID. We need to consider how to meet Essential (vulnerable) Patient needs during the Spring 2020 outbreak.
CANCER doesn’t care about COVID. And, COVID doesn’t care about CANCER. To ensure patient and organizational survival, hospitals must juggle resources and tend to both COVID and CANCER this Spring 2020. We must rapidly adopt technology to support identification, management and care of the patient population at risk of irreparable harm during this time when caregivers and administration are stretched beyond normal emotional, mental and physical capacity.
COVID-19 has completely disrupted US hospital and healthcare system workflow and focus. Unfortunately, this means, at many facilities, COVID-19 is paralyzing the identification, management and care of Essential Patients. The current loss of focus on Essential Patient Care is resulting in patient distress, risk of long-term suffering, loss of life, and poor outcomes as well as a loss of hospital income. This delayed care may be captured post-COVID, but return to normal hospital operations will not occur until the resulting bolus of delayed care, concurrent with normal care needs, subsides. Unless addressed soon, this avalanche of acute care needs with no or limited prioritization of non-emergent care will have long-term effects on our population, hospitals and economy as COVID and CANCER catastrophically intersect this summer.
We must quickly embrace technology to prioritize, manage and ensure care is provided for vulnerable patient populations at risk of irreparable harm (Essential Patients).