Unfortunate outcomes of COVID-19 pandemic healthcare policies—implemented to limit exposure to the coronavirus—were delays in clinical oncology care delivery. These delays and interruptions disrupted standard models of clinical oncology care delivery, affecting prevention, diagnosis, and treatment. The reason for these delays in care were multifactorial. Among them were patients avoiding medical care facilities because of their concern about contracting the virus; reduced patient schedules so patient care could be spread out over time, expanding clinical spaces; and a reduced number of clinical staff members available to work because of contracting the virus and limited personal protective equipment for providers and patients.
Prompted by the COVID-19 pandemic, the four case studies in this article illustrate how oncology nurses and their colleagues used novel clinical strategies to limit delays affecting patient care delivery.