Interview with Fernando Quiroa, MD, National Institute of Neoplastic Diseases (INEM), Urologic Oncology Assistant Physician and Coordinator for the College of Prostate Cancer Prevention.
Subject: Prevention of Covid and Neoplastic Diseases.
Dr. Quiroa talked about taking into account the idiosyncrasies of our people as our citizens are more focused on repair than prevention. He has been working at the cancer prevention college with patients that have prostate problems, recommending healthy eating, physical exercise, and preventive exams. Unfortunately, the community’s problem is the lack of prevention, emphasizing that it is better to anticipate a problem than to solve a problem.
We have not overcome the disease, he said referring to the virus, there is no 100% effective treatment to combat it, there are no vaccines available at the moment, that is why prevention: hand washing, the correct use of masks, social distancing remain the cornerstone upon which we must base our fight against this virus, Dr. Quiroa emphasized.
This is not the time to lower your guard, even if you see a decrease in the number of patients infected in our hospitals. We must note that in other countries, after the lifting of restrictions they went through a significant increase in the number of patients.
We must not fall into a false sense of success, even when we miss family and friends. We must be patient, Dr. Quiroa recommended.
Mask: proper use of the mask, avoid touching them. It’s preferable to use disposable masks. If you use reusable masks, you should follow the manufacturer instructions and wash them frequently.
Hand washing: wash your hands thoroughly or disinfect before handling masks as well as before eating food.
Quarantine: if you have symptoms it is best to self-quarantine, until the problem is taken care of. If you have had contact with infected people, self-quarantine immediately until you’re deemed to not be contagious.
Dr. Quiroa shared the opinion that the Ministry of Health has discontinued the use of some medicines for the treatment of Covid. He emphasized that this virus is brand new and that we have been learning along the way, approving new medication, and discontinuing the use of others. Medicine is evidence-based, responsibly approving, or discontinuing the use of drugs. When science proves that a drug does not work, its use is discontinued.
It was presumed that patients with neoplastic problems and who might have immune system disorders were going to show negative results. This was not so much; in urological cancer the results have been acceptable. The INEM HOSPITAL has good medical teams and health professionals who have managed the influx of cancer and Covid patients as these patients are always in considered to be in the vulnerable group.
Finally, I make it clear that it is impossible to be prepared for a pandemic, but we have also learned about the heart-warming examples of solidarity such as the work being done by Medicos Solidarios. Let’s not lower our guard and let’s learn to live with this disease.
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