In a new article, a team of public health specialists led by scientists from the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) provides comprehensive guidance on best practices to maintain quality-assured cancer screening during the COVID-19 pandemic. The article was published in the journal JCO Global Oncology.
The authors explain that restarting cancer screening activities in the post-COVID era will require a well-coordinated effort to reorganize clinical services to minimize backlogs in services and to reach out to communities more proactively to encourage people to return to routine health care. The team proposes that this period should be considered as an opportunity to improve the organization, quality, and reach of cancer screening programmes through the pragmatic application of technology and innovations and the retraction of non-evidence-based practices that may currently be in use.
The best practices in governance, organization, and implementation highlighted in the article will help cancer screening programmes to better address the disruptive consequences of the pandemic and thus prevent the predicted surge in the number of deaths from cancers, especially in resource-limited countries.
Basu P, Alhomoud S, Taghavi K, Carvalho AL, Lucas E, Baussano I.
Cancer screening in the coronavirus pandemic era: adjusting to a new situation
JCO Glob Oncol, Published online 30 March 2021;