COVID-19

COVID-19 Vaccination Information | Webinar: Living With COVID-19 and Lung Cancer | Hope in Isolation: Patient Stories from COVID-19 | Webinar: COVID-19 and Cancer Treatments  | Webinar: COVID-19 & Lung Cancer: How to Maximize Your Health, Happiness & Immune Function While at HomeWebinar: COVID-19 and Lung Cancer. What Patients Need to Know | Podcast: COVID-19 and Lung Cancer: Your Questions Answered | 
Tips for Health Care Appointments | Links to COVID-19 Information

COVID-19 Update from Lung Cancer Canada

In an effort to protect our community and our staff from potential exposure to COVID-19, our office in downtown Toronto is closed until further notice. During this time, our staff will be working remotely and continue our efforts to provide the services that lung cancer patients and the community come to expect from us. We will continue to respond to inquiries through phone, and e-mail. Our website and social media platforms will be updated frequently.

We are here to help so please do not hesitate to contact us.

At Lung Cancer Canada , the health, well-being and safety of people affected by lung cancer is our priority. As the situation with COVID-19 is quickly evolving, it is important to ensure that you have accurate information. 
 
The World Health Organization, the Public Health Association of Canada and your provincial Public Health office websites are the official sources of up to date information.  Scroll down to the bottom of this page for links to these sites. 
 
If you are a lung cancer patient, you may be at a higher risk for more serious outcomes of COVID-19. Cancer is considered an underlying medical condition. Some cancer treatments, such as surgery, chemotherapy and radiation therapy, can weaken your immune system, making it harder to fight infections. The Canadian Cancer Society has information specific to cancer and the coronavirus.
 

COVID-19 Vaccine Information for Lung Cancer Patients 

Lung Cancer Canada has received several queries from lung cancer patients concerning the COVID-19 vaccine, and because every individual situation is different, please speak with your healthcare provider about your concerns.
 
Below are answers to the most commonly asked questions.

What vaccines are approved?
Following thorough scientific reviews for safety and efficacy, Health Canada has approved four vaccines for use in Canada: The currently approved vaccines as of today are:
  • Pfizer-BioNtech COVID-19 Vaccine
  • Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine
  • AstraZeneca COVID-19 Vaccine
  • Janssen COVID-19 Vaccine
Click here for more information about the vaccines from Health Canada. 
 
Who can receive the vaccine?
According to the Public Health Agency of Canada, everyone who lives in Canada will have access to the vaccines. A phased approach to the delivery will be carried out due to the limited supply of the approved vaccines. Implementation of the vaccine roll out varies in different parts of the country based on the distribution of the vaccine, and priorities for vaccination in the different provinces and territories. This distribution will be expanded with the availability of more doses of the vaccines.
 
Is the vaccine safe for lung cancer patients?
While initial studies testing the COVID-19 vaccines did not include those with cancer and those receiving treatment with immunosuppressive drugs or with a weak immune system, experts agree that the COVID-19 vaccine is safe and is recommended for people with cancer, cancer survivors, and those currently on cancer treatment, including chemotherapy and immunotherapy. The American Society of Clinical Oncology and Infectious Diseases Society of America recently held a “COVID-19 Vaccine & Patients with Cancer” webinar which discussed the importance of COVID-19 vaccination, and a panel of oncology and infectious disease experts agreed that the vaccines have been shown to be safe and effective for the general population and there was no evidence they would not be safe for most cancer patients.
 
Although the COVID-19 vaccination is recommended for cancer patients, all COVID-19 precautions remain necessary, even after full vaccination. For patients with a history of allergies and anaphylactic reactions, please speak with your healthcare provider to discuss any risks or concerns.

Currently, the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine is only available for those aged 55 and over.
  
When can lung cancer patients receive the vaccine?
The National Committee on Immunization (NACI) has provided recommendations to ensure the efficient and equitable allocation of the COVID-19 vaccines. They have recommended that lung cancer patients be included in priority stage 3 of the vaccine rollout.

The Ontario Vaccine Clinical Advisory Group (VCAG) released updated guidance on COVID-19 vaccines on Mar 26, 2021, recommending that the interval between the first and second dose should be as per manufacturer protocol for those with immunocompromising conditions and immunosuppressive therapies.  This includes cancer patients on active treatment with chemotherapy, targeted therapies, and immunotherapy.  

NACI Recommendations:
https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/immunization/national-advisory-committee-on-immunization-naci/guidance-prioritization-key-populations-covid-19-vaccination.html

List of People at Higher Risk:
https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/publications/diseases-conditions/people-high-risk-for-severe-illness-covid-19.html 

In addition, each province has also been developing their individual roll-out plans. Those plans can be found here:

Alberta
https://www.alberta.ca/covid19-vaccine.aspx
 
British Columbia
https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/safety/emergency-preparedness-response-recovery/covid-19-provincial-support/vaccines
 
Manitoba
https://www.gov.mb.ca/covid19/vaccine/index.html
 
New Brunswick
https://www2.gnb.ca/content/gnb/en/corporate/promo/covid-19/vaccine.html
 
Newfoundland and Labrador
https://www.gov.nl.ca/covid-19/vaccine/
 
Nova Scotia
https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus/vaccine/

Overview of Plan 
 
Ontario
https://covid-19.ontario.ca/getting-covid-19-vaccines-ontario
 
Prince Edward Island
https://www.princeedwardisland.ca/en/topic/covid-19-vaccines
 
Quebec
https://www.quebec.ca/en/health/health-issues/a-z/2019-coronavirus/progress-of-the-covid-19-vaccination/
 
Saskatchewan
https://www.saskatchewan.ca/government/health-care-administration-and-provider-resources/treatment-procedures-and-guidelines/emerging-public-health-issues/2019-novel-coronavirus/covid-19-vaccine
 
Phase 2 Vaccination Rollout Plan
 
Territories
LCC will continue to monitor the situation and ensure the provision of updated information as it becomes available.
 
It is important to speak with your oncologist or cancer care team if you are offered the COVID-19 vaccine. Please continue to follow the public health safety protocols and guidelines such a wearing a mask, hand washing etc. to help minimize the risk of spread of COVID-19, even after vaccination.
 
Helpful Links and References
 
COVID-19 and Cancer - Information for Patients:
http://www.bccancer.bc.ca/health-info/covid-19-and-cancer-information-for-patients

Information from Ontario: 
COVID-19 Vaccine Information for Cancer Patients:
 
COVID-19 Vaccine & Patients with Cancer:
https://www.asco.org/asco-coronavirus-resources/covid-19-patient-care-information/covid-19-vaccine-patients-cancer
 
Guidance on the prioritization of initial doses of COVID-19 vaccine(s):
https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/immunization/national-advisory-committee-on-immunization-naci/guidance-prioritization-initial-doses-covid-19-vaccines.html
 
COVID-19 mRNA Vaccines for People With Cancer:
https://cadth.ca/sites/default/files/covid-19/COVID-19_mRNA_vaccines_for_people_with_cancer.pdf
 
Living With COVID-19 and Lung Cancer
Featuring:
Dr. James Spicer, PhD, MRCP, Professor of Experimental Cancer Medicine, King's College
Dre. Nicole Bouchard, MD, FRCPC, Pulmonologist, CHUM
Dr. Paul Wheatley-Price, MB, MBChB, FRCP, MD, Medical Oncologist, Ottawa Hospital

Topics Include:
How COVID-19 has changed lung cancer treatment
Lessons learned from the pandemic
What changes can be made permanently
Best practices going forward



COVID-19 and Cancer Treatments
 In this webinar from the Canadian Cancer Society, an expert panel of doctors answer some of the most commonly asked questions about how COVID-19 is influencing cancer treatment across CanadaSuch as: 
• How is cancer treatment managed differently during the pandemic?
• Can people with cancer participate in clinical trials during the pandemic, and will
clinical trials already underway continue?
• Why can’t caregivers accompany loved ones in cancer treatment centers as freely as
before the pandemic? What considerations are made when deciding if a loved one
can accompany someone receiving treatment?
• If I contract COVID-19 during cancer treatment, how will the healthcare system help
me manage both conditions?

You can find the webinar here.

*To access a webinar on COVID-19 and cancer in French, please visit here.

COVID-19 and Lung Cancer: How to Maximize Your Health, Happiness and Immune Function While at Home.

Lung Cancer Canada & Healing and Cancer present a webinar to learn about:
  • How to transform anxiety into empowerment
  • Scientifically-proven mind/body techniques to reduce anxiety and boost your immunity
  • How self-compassion and social connection creates strength and resilience

Featuring Dr. Rob Rutledge, Radiation Oncologist, Associate Professor in the Faculty of Medicine at Dalhousie University and co-founder of the Healing and Cancer Foundation. To learn more visit https://healingandcancer.org/




A Panel Discussion: COVID-19 and Lung Cancer.  What Patients Need to Know.

Lung Cancer Canada presents a panel discussion answering lung cancer patient's questions and concerns about COVID-19.

Speakers:
Dr. Rosalyn Juergens Medical Oncologist, Chair of the Lung Cancer Canada Medical Advisory Committee
Dr. Normand Blais Medical Oncologist, Member of the Lung Cancer Canada Medical Advisory Committee
Andrea Redway Lung Cancer Survivor & Patient Advocate

 

 

Lung Cancer Voices - Special Edition: COVID-19 and Lung Cancer - Your Questions Answered

In this special episode, Christina Sit, Programs Director at Lung Cancer Canada asks Dr. Paul Wheatley-Price the most common questions about COVID-19 that we have heard from lung cancer patients.
 

 

Tips for your appointments:

Remember: the situation is fluid and the cancer care teams are working to try to find a way to ensure that patient care is maintained.  There are still many unknowns.  

  • Is my appointment still as scheduled?
  • If it is rescheduled, ask for a new date or ask if it is possible to have a telephone or video appointment.
  • If you are nervous about travelling to, or going into the cancer centre, ask if there is an option to have a phone or video appointment.
  • If your treatment is delayed and you feel that you have been placed in a lower "category" or priority, you may ask to have have the decision reviewed.
It is normal to feel anxious about your appointments as the situation is quickly evolving.  Remember that your medical team is there to help you, so please talk to them should you have any questions about your care.  They are the best source of information if you have questions about your risk, based on where you live in Canada and your medical history.  They will also keep you updated about any possible changes to your cancer treatments during the COVID-19 outbreak.

In addition, follow these pre-cautionary steps:
 
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • If soap and water are not available, use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol content. 
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth, especially with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Cough and sneeze into your elbow, not your hands.
  • Use cleaning products to disinfect objects and surfaces you commonly touch, such as doorknobs, countertops, phones and toys.
  • Stay home if you are feeling sick to avoid spreading germs to others.

On the lighter side, try using this site: https://washyourlyrics.com/ to create your own handwashing sign with lyrics to your favorite song!
 

COVID-19 Information Links: 


Cancer Specific:
COVID-19 Cancer Patient Support Hub: https://saveyourskin.ca/covid-19-cancer-patient-support-hub/
 
Global:
WHO: https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019
 
Canada:
Health Canada: https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/coronavirus-disease-covid-19.html
 
Canadian Cancer Society: http://www.cancer.ca/en/about-us/for-media/media-releases/national/2020/covid19/?region=on
 
Provincial:
 
British Columbia:
 
BC Centre for Disease Control: http://www.bccdc.ca/health-info/diseases-conditions/covid-19
 
BC Cancer Centre: http://www.bccancer.bc.ca/about/news-stories/news/2020/covid-19-and-cancer-treatments
 
Alberta:
 
Alberta.ca: https://www.alberta.ca/coronavirus-info-for-albertans.aspx
 
Alberta Health Services:  https://www.albertahealthservices.ca/topics/Page16944.aspx
 
Saskatchewan:
 
Saskatchewan Public Health: https://www.saskatchewan.ca/residents/health/~/link.aspx?_id=6C6BF971659346E0B8E9DE4AE3B2AFF9&_z=z
 
Saskatchewan Cancer Agency: http://www.saskcancer.ca/patients-and-families-alias/2019-novel-coronavirus-covid-19
 
Manitoba:
 
Manitoba.ca:  https://www.gov.mb.ca/covid19/index.html
 
CancerCare Manitoba: https://www.cancercare.mb.ca/About-Us/communications-and-public-affairs/news-archive/Information-for-Cancer-Patients-on-COVID-19
 
Ontario:
 
Ontario Public Health: https://www.publichealthontario.ca/en/diseases-and-conditions/infectious-diseases/respiratory-diseases/novel-coronavirus
 
Ontario.ca: https://www.ontario.ca/page/2019-novel-coronavirus
 
Quebec (in English and French):
 
Quebec.ca: https://www.quebec.ca/en/health/health-issues/a-z/2019-coronavirus/
 
New Brunswick:
 
New Brunswick Public Health: https://www2.gnb.ca/content/gnb/en/departments/ocmoh/cdc/content/respiratory_diseases/coronavirus.html
 
Nova Scotia:
 
Nova Scotia Public Health:  https://novascotia.ca/coronavirus/
 
Newfoundland and Labrador:
 
Newfoundland and Labrador:  https://www.gov.nl.ca/covid-19/
 
Prince Edward Island:
 
PEI Public Health: https://www.princeedwardisland.ca/en/topic/covid-19
 
Yukon:
 
Yukon Minister of Health: http://www.yukoncmoh.ca/
 
Cancer Care Yukon: https://yukonhospitals.ca/
 
Northwest Territories:
 
Northwest Territories: https://www.hss.gov.nt.ca/en/services/coronavirus-disease-covid-19
 
Nunavut:
 
Nunavut Public Health: https://www.gov.nu.ca/health/information/covid-19-novel-coronavirus