News & stories Ovacome Blog Tele-oncology during the COVID-19 pandemic The University of Surrey Have your hospital outpatient appointments switched to telephone or video consultations? Are you seeing your cancer team regularly by this method? How do you feel about this? The University of Surrey is undertaking research to explore the impact of COVID-19 on the way cancer services have been delivered. They have launched a short, anonymous online survey to help understand the views of patients with gynaecological cancers during this time - Tele-oncology during the COVID-19 pandemic. Background The COVID-19 pandemic has brought unprecedented challenges for healthcare across the globe. We had little time to prepare and are still learning the best way to adapt to these new times. People living with cancer are at higher risk from contracting the virus and so have been advised by the Government to maintain strict social distancing or even to “shield”. Yet it is so important that you continue to receive the highest standard of cancer care and have appropriate contact with your cancer team. What are we doing? The NHS has worked hard to adapt to these challenges, including the greater use of digital technology. Most outpatient appointments are now being conducted remotely, for example by telephone consultation. For cancer patients, this includes patients currently on chemotherapy or other anti-cancer treatments, patients in remission on routine follow-up programmes and those having pre- or post- operative reviews. We hope that this will help everyone to feel safer and minimise the risk of exposure to the virus. However, we also recognise that a telephone call is not always appropriate and some patients may find the use of technology harder than others. Can we improve? Remote consultations may go on for some time and could be used in the future regardless of COVID. This is why we are running this study to understand what your views are and see if there are ways in which we can improve this service for you. In particular, we are interested in how well you think remote consultations are working and when you would prefer to be seen in person or don’t feel comfortable speaking on the phone. How can you get involved? We would be very grateful if you would fill in this questionnaire, which should take around ten minutes to complete. This can be done online or we can post you a copy. If you need help accessing the questionnaire or if English is not your first language, please ask us for help. This research will make a direct difference to patient care. To access the Questionnaire, please click on the following link Tele-oncology during the COVID-19 pandemic. Please click here for more information about the Study If you have any questions please email [email protected] or call 07423 004 174. Thank you very much for your time.