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Enhanced Safety Precautions for Cancer Patients

Atlantic Health System wants to keep you safe and healthy. 

Our highest priority is giving you access to the cancer care we can provide.

The COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic has made caring for cancer patients more complicated, particularly if you are getting chemotherapy, immunotherapy, and/or other infusion treatments. Chemotherapy and immunotherapy can affect your immune system, which may lower your ability to fight infection, especially if you are exposed to the COVID-19 coronavirus. We encourage you to review the important information below, which will help to keep you, your family members, and your cancer care team safe and healthy.

- Eric Whitman, MD  Medical Director
- Lydia Nadeau, RN Executive Director

Lower Your Risk

While there is no definite way to eliminate this risk, leading cancer organizations have published information on how to stay as safe as possible during treatment. Please be assured that our staff uses extreme caution to protect themselves and all of our patients.

This includes:

  • Temperature checks for all employees and patients
  • Wearing personal protective equipment (PPE)
  • Washing hands regularly or using hand sanitizer when not able to use soap and water
  • Social distancing – stay six feet apart from others
  • Cleaning and sanitizing environments (exam rooms, equipment, hand-held devices and screens, palm readers, etc.) between each patient use

It is also very important that you and your family take steps to protect yourself, not just when you are receiving treatment, but when you leave here as well:

  • Wear a mask when not at home – change it when it becomes soiled or wash a cloth mask daily
  • Stay home - let others do errands for you
  • Keep in mind that not everyone who has COVID-19 appears sick

Telehealth

If you are able to conduct follow-up visits using a computer, tablet or phone, ask your doctor if this is a good option for you. Using a form of telehealth can be ideal for reducing the risk of exposure during routine office visits. Of course, some in-person visits are necessary and you will still have to come in for care such as chemotherapy infusion, bloodwork, and imaging scans.

Clean and Disinfect

It is important to clean correctly and regularly:

  • Wash hands for 20 seconds with soap and water. Clean between the fingers. Turn off faucet with paper towel or elbow. Use clean towel or air dry.
  • If washing hands is not possible, use hand sanitizer
  • Change face mask daily or machine wash reusable ones each day after use.
  • Wipe down all items that come into your home – such as groceries and supplies – with chlorine wipes or alcohol-based disinfectants.
  • Keep cardboard containers outside of your living area for a day or two. After opening a package, wipe down all items that have solid surfaces.

Support Services

Please remember that we are here for you, to treat you, support you and answer your questions. Our cancer care program is staffed and working for you. Most of our support groups and services are now available online. Find a complete list of virtual cancer programs >

Please remember to rest and stay hydrated. Feel free to call your health care professional with any questions or concerns. We are here for you. #ForwardTogether