COVID-19 Testing & Treatment

COVID-19 Testing & Treatment

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Can I get tested for COVID-19 at MSK?

We are screening our patients for symptoms of COVID-19 and testing them as needed. MSK is not offering testing to members of the general public.

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I noticed my patient chart says that “coronavirus” was detected in my lab tests. Does that mean I may have COVID-19?

No, it does not. The routine tests done at MSK test only for the types of coronavirus that have been around for a long time, like the types that cause the common cold. If you have been tested for COVID-19 at MSK, your results will display separately as COVID-19.

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What is COVID-19 testing like?

In the most common way to conduct the test, a healthcare provider places a swab in your nose to collect a sample from the back of the nose and throat. 

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If I get COVID-19 will I be sent to another hospital for treatment?

No. If you are being treated for cancer at MSK, you will not be sent to another hospital if you get COVID-19. If you need to be admitted to the hospital, we have dedicated units for taking care of people with COVID-19. If you have COVID-19 and are well enough to be home, the healthcare providers from our COVID-19 Management Program will care for you.

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What do I need to know about COVID-19 as a cancer survivor?

Cancer and cancer treatment can weaken the immune system, but when treatment ends, most people’s immune system recovers. The biggest risk factor for getting COVID-19 is being exposed to the virus, so as a cancer survivor the most effective thing you can do is follow CDC guidelines, which include social distancing and washing your hands thoroughly. If you have concerns about your risk for COVID-19 being higher as a result of past cancer treatment, talk with your healthcare provider.

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