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COVID-19 Information for health professionals in cancer care

Up-to-date COVID-19 resources for health professionals in cancer care.

The global COVID-19 pandemic is an evolving situation. Updates to this page will be made as the situation develops. 

COVID-19 Treatment Information


Visit the BCCDC links below for the latest information regarding COVID-19 treatment:

A provincial prescription is available for providers to use (https://www2.gov.bc.ca/assets/gov/health/forms/2368fil.pdf)

British Columbians can now find out if these treatments are right for them and be connected to a virtual treatment service through (www.gov.bc.ca/covidtreatments), starting with a self-assessment.

Clinical Guidelines

This document is intended as a guidance document to provide recommendations for determining priority for consultation, assessment, and treatment of patients with cancer in the event that the COVID-19 outbreak disrupts access to health care resources.


Management of Surgical Patients 

The purpose of this document is to provide infection prevention and control guidance for the management of procedures done in a surgical setting at BC Cancer.

Infection Prevention and Control Guidelines

Management of Patients Requiring AGMPs


The purpose of this document is to provide minimum requirements for Aerosol Generating Medical Procedures (AGMPs) performed on patients with suspected and confirmed COVID-19.  This document will replace Management of Dental and Oral Oncology Patients and Management of Patients Receiving Nebulized Therapy.


Performing Nasopharyngoscopy

The purpose of this document is to provide infection prevention and control guidance for nasopharyngoscopy for patients at BC Cancer during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The purpose of this Policy is to: 

  • Describe the rules and principles for screening of Respiratory Communicable Diseases (including COVID-19) and ongoing symptom assessment for patients and visitors at the Provincial Health Services Authority (PHSA); 
  • Outline the responsibilities of those identified as in scope for adhering to the Policy; and 
  • Identify who is responsible for monitoring compliance and potential outcomes for non-compliance with Policy.
  • COVID-19 Pandemic: Screening for Respiratory Communicable Diseases


In Case of Reduced Access to Cancer Surgeries

These guidelines are organized by tumour site and make recommendations regarding how patients should be treated in light of cancer surgery delays or cancellations.

Prioritization and Mitigation Recommendations

The purpose of this document is to provide tumour group recommendation on prioritization level appropriate alterations in treatment for each indication if a centre needs to start restricting access to particular priority.


This guidance is intended for oncologists and other health-care providers, and is based on known evidence as of October 7, 2021. 

 

The guidelines have been approved by the Ministry of Health and BC Centre for Disease Control. 

On October 5, B.C. announced the expansion of third dose vaccinations for those who are moderately to severely immunocompromised. This group will be eligible to receive a third dose of COVID-19 vaccine. 

For people with cancer, this includes:


  • Since March 2020, have received or are receiving systemic therapy (including chemotherapy, molecular therapy, immunotherapy, targeted therapies including CAR-T, monoclonal antibodies, hormonal therapy for cancer). This includes solid tumours as well as hematologic cancers within this time period.
  • Since January 2020, have received an anti-CD20 drug for a malignant condition.
  • Since October 2020, have received or are receiving radiation therapy for cancer.
  • Since September 2019, have had bone marrow or stem cell transplant or are still taking immunosuppressant medications related to transplant.

People in this group will be contacted by the provincial Get Vaccinated system about how and when to receive a third dose.

 

Please encourage patients with questions to visit bccancer.bc.ca/covid19 for a list of frequently asked questions. 

 

You may be asked to fill out an Attestation Form for patients to use for those who believe they were not included and should be. Please visit the Doctors of B.C. website for more information. 



Serious Illness Care Program

The Serious Illness Care Program is a well-established method of how to engage in meaningful discussions with patients and families. In regular circumstances, clinicians are encouraged to attend a 3-hour training session, & read through the 20 pg companion guide. In the current climate, we recognize this isn’t possible for most clinicians.

If you need to start using this guide right now – please read the resource page (below).

Resources:

Serious Illness Care Program - Reference Guide for Clinicians: COVID-19 Adaptation

The purpose of this scripted guide is to discuss potential outcomes of possible COVID-19 infection with at risk adults prior to a health crisis.

Resources:

Serious Illness Conversation Guide - COVID-19 Adaptation

Personal Protective Equipment

The Ministry of Health has issued a framework for the use of PPE in health care settings. The primary motivation behind the creation of this framework is to ensure best practice Infection Control and Prevention (IPAC) practices while ensuring PPE is preserved and use where it is most needed and clinically appropriate.

A standard has been created for the application of these PPE guidelines for PHSA. Please review carefully.

Resources:

COVID-19: Personal Protective Equipment Use During the Pandemic

This document reviews risks associated with using additional Non-Standard PPE. 


Remote Ordering of Systematic Therapy During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Updated Jan 18 2022 :

There will be circumstances where prescribers may need to self-isolate and are not able to be on site at the regional cancer centres to order systemic treatments. The BC Cancer Remote Ordering of Systemic Therapy Policy outlines the requirements for safe remote ordering of systemic therapy treatment.

This is a process for exceptional circumstances and not a parallel system to order systemic therapy for physicians working in a BC Cancer clinic or affiliated site. 

Please see webpage Remote Ordering of Systemic Therapy for further information on this process and speak to your regional cancer centre operations team. 

BC Cancer health professionals with questions about the content on this page may email the BC Cancer communications department.






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