The importance of returning to screening
The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic brought many elective medical procedures, including cancer screening, to a screeching halt. As we moved forward and adapted our healthcare settings to reduce the risk of spreading infection, our facilities became the safest possible places to receive care. Unfortunately, the initial shock of the pandemic has left lingering effects with one of the most troublesome being a significate drop in cancer screening.
Recent data gathered by the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) in collaboration with the American cancer Society found that:
- One third of adults failed to receive cancer screening during the pandemic
- 43% of patients missed routine preventative appoints due to fear of COVID-19
- It is estimated that 22 million cancer screenings did not take place between March and June of 2020 due to cancellations or missed appointments
- Screening for breast, colon, prostate and lung cancers were lowered by 85%, 75%, 74% and 56% respectively
Screening saves lives! With cancer taking the lives of over 600,000 people in 2020, early detection not only offers more treatment options but also improves overall chances of survival. In light of these findings, it is more critical than ever that our community members prioritize cancer screenings.
Routine cancer screening procedures such as mammography and colonoscopy -- essential for early detection and treatment of cancers -- rely primarily on office-based medical technologies. HCA East Florida’s healthcare facilities remain vigilant when it comes to sanitation, screening, social distancing and following all guidelines set forth by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), so you can feel confident in seeking lifesaving preventative services.
Do not delay care. Cancer has not stopped in the face of COVID-19 and neither should you. Learn more about screening services and cancer care available to you.