Abrazo officials remind public to reschedule cancer screenings

Independent Newsmedia
Posted 6/8/20

Abrazo Health physicians and staff is recognized National Cancer Survivors Day on June 7 by reminding the public to reschedule any cancer screening appointments that were missed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Abrazo officials remind public to reschedule cancer screenings

Posted

Abrazo Health physicians and staff is recognized National Cancer Survivors Day on June 7 by reminding the public to reschedule any cancer screening appointments that were missed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Early diagnosis of many types of cancer can greatly increase the chance of successful treatment. Since the COVID-19 pandemic began, appointments for screenings of breast, colon and cervix cancers were down by up to 94% compared to average volumes in the prior three years, according to Epic Health Research.

“We recognize that state orders and social distancing protocols have caused many people to cancel or delay regular screenings that they would have otherwise already had done,” Dr. Linda Greer, a diagnostic radiologist with the Breast Health Center at Abrazo Central Campus, said in a prepared statement.

“If you have missed, or are behind schedule for an important screening like a mammogram or colonoscopy, you should not delay rescheduling these procedures. We want the community to know that Abrazo has have strict protocols in place to safely care for patients, and completely separate pathways for COVID and non-COVID patients in our facilities.”

The Breast Center Abrazo Central Campus offers 3D mammography in a calming, upscale environment. The hospital’s Breast Center is decorated in a soothing theme with a warm, quiet environment, with private dressing areas and a relaxing lounge area, according to a press release.

“Whether you are at an increased risk for breast cancer, including individuals with mutations such as BRCA1 and BRCA2, or you just missed your regular screening mammogram due to COVID-19, now is the time to call your physician or breast center and get back on the schedule,” Sherry Gage, director of oncology services at Abrazo Central Campus, said in a prepared statement.

“We have taken the proper steps to ensure patients who come to our hospitals or diagnostic centers for any screenings or procedures will be taken care of in a safe and secure environment.”

Abrazo’s COVID-19 safety standards were developed to maximize safety, maintain vigilance of all potential risks, create separate care pathways and take a multi-factor approach to maintaining a safe environment for patients and visitors.

They are a rigorous combination of infection prevention processes, training, testing, personal protective equipment and technology. Standards include the following components:

  • Distinct COVID-19 safety Zones and COVID Care Zones – separate areas with clear signage and protocols;
  • Rigorous physician and staff protocols – daily screening, universal masking and access to PPE;
  • Heightened sanitization – enhanced cleaning of surfaces and plenty of hand sanitization stations;
  • Access to COVID-19 testing – in-house, rapid testing for patients, physicians and staff who require it;
  • Precautions for patients and visitors – provision of facemasks, hand sanitizer and physical distancing; and
  • Enhanced virtual access – virtual care, remote monitoring as well as connectivity with loved ones

“Our COVID Safety standards will help patients confidently seek care at our hospitals and allow our community to be less worried for loved ones. We are providing the reassurance that our patients, staff and their families deserve,” Abrazo Health Chief Executive Officer Brian Elisco said in a prepared statement.

“I am proud of our team’s work to implement and optimize these standards to provide care for patients in the safest environment possible.”

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