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Our Cancer Patients and COVID-19 

Providing compassionate care to our Northside Hospital Cancer Institute (NHCI) patients, their families and the communities we serve, is at the center of all we do. We are closely monitoring the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic both globally and in Georgia. We are following the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines for prevention, testing for and treatment of COVID-19. We work closely with the Georgia Department of Public Health and remain in close contact with state leadership for the most recent updates.

Although most people who are infected by COVID-19 develop mild symptoms, certain patients with cancer may be at an increased risk for serious illness. Extra precautions to reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission within our facilities include increased screening efforts in our outpatient clinics at each entrance, extra cleaning of clinics and common areas, and visitor limitations.

We recommend that all cancer patients and family members practice precautions recommended by the CDC, such as:

  • Cleaning your hands often by washing with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after you have been in a public place or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
  • Avoiding touching eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoiding close contact with others, such as shaking hands and hugging.
  • Covering coughs or sneezes with tissues and then throwing the tissue in the trash.
  • Cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched objects and surfaces with a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.

In an effort to minimize exposure to our patients and health care providers, patients can expect additional screening and visitor policy changes at all of our facilities, including:

  • The following questions will be used to screen all patients:
    • Do you have a fever (temperature greater than 100.4), cough or difficulty breathing?
    • In the past 14 days, have you been in contact with anyone who has coronavirus or who is suspected of having coronavirus?
  • For cancer patients with outpatient appointments:
    • Patients will not be able to have visitors stay with them during their appointments.
    • In some cases, exceptions to the above policy may be considered. For more information, patients should contact their provider prior to their appointment date.
    • Visitors can drop patients off and will be called when the appointment is complete.

We will comply with all local and national health mandates, which may require the rescheduling of appointments. We will continue to evaluate our protocols to protect our staff, providers and patients and will make changes as they become necessary. If you have any additional questions, please contact us at 404-531-4444.

If you are looking for additional information regarding coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), please consider the visiting following resources:

Centers for Disease Control Georgia Department of Public Health
American Cancer Society Cancer Support Community

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