Healthcare Disparities and Outcomes of Cancer Patients in a Community Setting from a COVID-19 Epicenter

Brianna M. Jones, Eric J. Lehrer, Anurag Saraf, Zahra Shafaee, Lucas Resende Salgado, Virginia W. Osborn

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


There have been numerous studies demonstrating how cancer patients are at an increased risk of mortality. Within New York City, our community hospital emerged as an epicenter of the first wave of the pandemic in the spring of 2020 and serves a unique population that is predominately uninsured, of a lower income, and racially/ethnically diverse. In this single institution retrospective study, the authors seek to investigate COVID-19 diagnosis, severity and mortality in patients with an active cancer diagnosis. Demographic, clinical characteristics, treatment, SARS-CoV-2 laboratory results, and outcomes were evaluated. In our community hospital during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic in the United States, patients with active cancer diagnosis appear to be at increased risk for mortality (30%) and severe events (50%) due to the SARS-CoV-2 infection compared to the general population. A higher proportion of active cancer patients with Medicaid insurance, Hispanic ethnicity, other race, and male sex had complications and death from COVID-19 infection. The pandemic has highlighted the health inequities that exist in vulnerable patient populations and underserved communities such as ours.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1150-1162
Number of pages13
JournalCurrent Oncology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2022


  • COVID-19
  • Cancer
  • Health disparities
  • Mortality
  • Outcomes
  • Severity


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