Cancer and COVID-19

Color enhanced microscopic image of the COVID-19 virus particle

A Message from Louis M. Weiner, MD, Georgetown Lombardi Director

We are committed to providing our patients with the most appropriate care during the outbreak of COVID-19. It’s understandable if you are concerned or confused about what measures you should take, both for yourself or your loved ones, during these uncertain times. I hope you find the resources on this page useful. We will be adding new information as it becomes available.

Resources for Patients Being Treated at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital and Georgetown Lombardi

When You Call or Visit Your Provider

John L. Marshall, MD, chief, Division of Hematology/Oncology at Georgetown Lombardi, has created videos explaining what patients may experience when they call or visit their providers.

Preparing for Your Next Clinic Visit

Dr. Marshall explains procedures MedStar and Georgetown have instituted to ensure your safety while you receive the best care possible. (Note: This recording was made in March 2020. Since that time, health and safety measures have changed.)

View Clinic Visit Video

What to Expect From a Telehealth Visit

Dr. Marshall gives a brief overview of what a telehealth visit is all about.

View Telehealth Visit Video

Information From MedStar Health

A screenshot of the MedStar Health webpage describing telehealth visits

About MedStar Health Video Visits

MedStar Health logo

Information from MedStar Health on COVID-19

COVID-19 Safety Precautions in Place at MedStar Health

COVID-19 Vaccine Information from MedStar Health

Nutrition Tips for Cancer Patients from MedStar Georgetown University Hospital (en español)

Facebook Live Events Addressing Cancer and COVID-19

Screenshot of Facebook Live event titled Crisis, Spirituality, and Faith
Crisis, Spirituality & Faith (recorded 4/29/2020)
Screenshot of Facebook Live event titled Cancer & Telehealth During COVID-19
Cancer & Telehealth During COVID-19 (recorded 4/22/2020)

COVID-19’s Impact on Cancer Patients and Survivors with John Marshall, MD (recorded 3/31/2020)
How to Maintain Good Nutrition Amid COVID-19, with John Marshall, MD, and oncology dietitian Rachel Wong (recorded 4/6/2020)

Selected Resources for Self-Care Through Art & Music

Provided by the Georgetown Lombardi Arts & Humanities Program

Frequently Asked Questions From Cancer Patients and Survivors

Dr. Marshall addresses some of the questions he and his Georgetown Lombardi colleagues have been hearing most often from current cancer patients and survivors.

What if I’m Undergoing Active Treatment?

View the Answer

Should Cancer Patients Take Extra Precautions?

View the Answer

Are Cancer Survivors at Increased Risk from COVID-19?

View the Answer

What If I Am Taking An Oral Therapy For My Cancer?

View the Answer

What If I Have Recently Been Diagnosed With Cancer?

View the Answer

Are Cancer Patients “Immune Compromised” and What Does That Mean?

View the Answer

What If I’m Not Sure If I’m Experiencing Treatment Side-Effects or COVID-19 Symptoms?

View the Answer

Resources for Cancer Patients and Survivors

Please Note: The guidance on this page is provided for educational purposes only, and is not a substitution for the advice of your treating physician or other health care professional. We encourage you to speak with your doctor about all individual cancer care decisions. 

Helping Neck Breathers Cope With the COVID-19 Pandemic

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has advised people to wear cloth masks in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. For the laryngectomees (100,000 in the U.S.), who breathe through a permanent opening in the neck after their vocal cords have been surgically removed (usually because of throat cancer), cloth face masks are of little use. An alternative means of protecting their “stoma” is needed. Itzhak Brook, MD, MSc, adjunct professor pediatrics at Georgetown University Medical Center, who lost his vocal cords in 2008 following a diagnosis of throat cancer, offers specific recommendations for neck breathers who need an alternative to traditional face masks.

Cancer.Net Coronavirus and COVID-19: What People With Cancer Need to Know

Cancer.Net Common Questions About COVID-19 and Cancer (updated regularly)

ASCO COVID-19 Patient Care Information

National Cancer Institute Coronavirus: What People with Cancer Should Know

Cancer Support Community Helpline for Cancer Support and Other Virtual Resources

CDC Preventing Infections in Cancer Patients
(Spanish language version)