More deaths from undiagnosed cancer will emerge in the pandemic’s second year

The following article was written by Duaa Eldeib and was published by ProPublica last May 4, 2021.

This article tells us the story of an emerging health crisis precipitated by the COVID lockdowns. According to the article, preventive cancer screenings in the United States have dropped by as much as 94% in the first four months of 2020. In Mount Sinai, one of the largest hospital systems catering primarily to the Black and Latino population, the number of mammograms during the same period dropped by 96%. That meant delayed diagnoses and more cancer deaths in the future.

The National Cancer Institute predicted that almost 10,000 excess deaths from breast and colorectal cancer alone will be recorded in the next decade due to pandemic-related delays in diagnosis and treatment. They estimate that the impact on communities of color will be particularly hard. Black Americans already have the highest mortality due to cancer compared to any other racial group. Meanwhile, cancer is the leading cause of death among Latinos, with breast cancers garnering the top spot.

Dr. Paramjeet Khosla, Mount Sinai’s chief of hematology-oncology, delivered dozens of cancer diagnoses in the week preceding the article’s publication. She said, “Patients were showing up with more neglected bodies and more advanced cases of cancer, which at Mount Sinai, was already more than what many oncologists saw”.

The article also follows the story of newly diagnosed cancer patient Teresa Ruvalcaba to explain why people like her have chosen to delay hospital visits despite the emerging symptoms of cancer. We are also introduced to the unique suffering experienced by marginalized communities and how the covid crisis has exacerbated their suffering.

Editor’s Note: The excessive focus on COVID has made governments forget that bigger, more pressing issues need to be addressed in our societies.

More than one year since a “pandemic” was declared, and the numerous evidence showing that countries have overreacted by implementing lockdowns and mask mandates, the suffering has worsened. For Revalcaba’s family, delayed cancer diagnosis not only decreased her chances of survival, it also threatened the future of her children who must now share the burden of growing medical bills and caring for her. And doctors must face the growing demand for cancer treatment as health care systems are still forced to focus a majority of their effort in dealing with a “false pandemic” and a disease with a 99% recovery rate.

ProPublica’s article focus on the story of one doctor and one family makes it powerful. It gives a face to the “collateral damage” – a reminder that these are real people who have suffered the consequences of the illogical coronavirus policies. This is the story of many families who must now attempt to continue their lives despite the much harder circumstances because they have no other choice but to do so.

A year ago, health experts and medical professional have already cautioned against lockdowns and the cancellation of routine and elective treatments because they knew its devastating impacts [see UK figures show: Lockdowns killed two for every three COVID deaths, New Study: Lockdowns ten times more deadly than SARS-CoV-2, German minister: Lockdowns will kill more people worldwide than COVID-19, Lockdowns have killed millions]. Now the impacts they have tried to avoid are here. Will governments show the same obsessive desire to eradicate cancer and other diseases as they have for the fictitious zero covid? Will they move mountains too, to address the growing health crisis stemming from one year of neglect?

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