This study from Ireland shows the profound impact of COVID-19 on colorectal cancer care, with a significant reduction in cancer diagnoses and surgical treatment. The results of this study are unlikely to be unique to Ireland and challenge all health services to focus on maintaining non-COVID health services and clearing waiting lists to minimize the potential growth of delayed cancer diagnoses with poorer outcomes.
The continued roll out of COVID-19 vaccination programs has undoubtedly improved cancer screening and surgical provision with frameworks on returning to norms established; however, this cannot offset the significant reduction in screening, cancer diagnosis, and surgery that has resulted from COVID-19.
Donlon, Noel E. M.D.; Hayes, Conall M.D.; Davern, Maria M.Sc.; Bolger, Jarlath C. Ph.D., F.R.C.S.I.; Irwin, Shane C. M.Ch.; Butt, Waqas T. F.R.C.S.; McNamara, Deborah A. M.D.; Mealy, Kenneth M.D. Impact of COVID-19 on the Diagnosis and Surgical Treatment of Colorectal Cancer: A National Perspective. Diseases of the Colon & Rectum: November 2021 - Volume 64 - Issue 11 - p 1305-1309 doi: 10.1097/DCR.0000000000002230