Dr. Kulasinghe on Cancer Care During the COVID-19 Crisis in Australia

Arutha Kulasinghe, PhD, discusses cancer care during the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic in Australia.

Arutha Kulasinghe, PhD, a Faculty of Health at the Queensland University of Technology, discusses cancer care during the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic in Australia.

To control the spread of the virus, both Australia and New Zealand successfully implemented an elimination or suppression model, Kulasinghe explains. Currently, the spread of the virus in Australia has been linked with international travelers, and lockdowns have been implemented any time a rise in cases has been detected, Kulasinghe says.

Currently, the rate of infection has returned to manageable levels without the need for lockdowns, which is, in part, due to the Australian government's efforts to prevent the spread of the virus, and the benefit of being a relatively isolated island, Kulasinghe explains. 

Moreover, elective surgeries were suspended to protect patients with cancer. The use of technology such as telehealth has also played a major role in safely continuing cancer care during the pandemic, Kulasinghe concludes.