The Fight against COVID-19 Threatens to Cause Collateral Health Damage
By Rachel Issaka, About The Author S, M.D., M.A.S., Is An Assistant Professor Of Medicine In Gastroenterology At The University Of Washington, The Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center In Seattle. She Is Also A Health Services Researcher Whose Work Is Focused On Decreasing Mortality Colorectal Cancer, Especially Among Medically Underserved Populations. Her Work Is Supported The National Institutes Of Health National Cancer Institute.
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The need for chronic disease management and prevention does not disappear during a pandemic. As I am a gastroenterologist and colon cancer researcher, the irony of cancelling procedures meant to detect colorectal cancer at an early stage during Colon Cancer Awareness Month was not lost on me. Colorectal cancer is just one of many preventable diseases impacted by the new policy. In the midst of a pandemic, we cannot and should not abandon chronic disease management or disease prevention. Now is the time for ingenuity, because failure to prevent and manage chronic medical conditions will lead to other public health crises long after COVID-19 is contained.