eISSN: 2450-5722
ISSN: 2450-5927
Journal of Health Inequalities
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vol. 9
Review paper

The impact of the early period of the COVID-19 pandemic on screening programmes of breast, colorectal and cervical cancer

Kacper Fudali
Karolina Sagan
Emilia Kwiatkowska
Aureliusz Kosendiak

Students Scientific Association, Department of Physical Education and Sport, Wroclaw Medical University, Poland
J Health Inequal 2023; 9 (1): 37–42
Online publish date: 2023/06/30
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The SARS-CoV-2 pandemic has changed the lives of many people in various aspects. Preventive actions instigated due to the pandemic by governments and the fear of citizens have contributed to the decline in the number of people tested for cancer and halting some of the cancer prevention programmes. The study’s main goal was to collect and analyse data from publicly available statistics and scientific articles on the differences in the number of screenings performed. This study compares the numbers of screenings for specific cancers in overlapping periods before and after the outbreak of the pandemic.

Material and methods:
In the process of creation, search engines and pages collecting data as well as scientific articles were used, from which a narrow part was selected in line with the idea of the study. Results: The information collected concerned the differences in the number of screening tests performed for breast, colorectal and cervical cancer. There were visible declines in the number of study participants from different regions of the world during the periods of 2020 compared to the statistics from 2019 among all three types of cancer.

The pandemic period left a mark in many places of the world on the number of cancer preventive examinations analysed at work, which is also reflected in the overall case. Since the start of the pandemic, attention has focused mainly on the prevention of deaths resulting from SARS-CoV-2 virus infection, while leaving other life-threatening diseases in the background, including cancer. Maintaining the continuity of preventive programmes and creating solutions ensuring the safety of oncological patients in the era of restrictions may prove to be a key issue in preventing delayed diagnosis and thus reducing the costs of treatment and hospitalization of patients, as well as deaths in future years.


colorectal neoplasms, quarantine, SARS-CoV-2, breast neoplasms, uterine cervical neoplasms, early cancer detection

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