Silver Linings:


Silver Linings in cancer care due to the COVID-19 pandemic have not been systematically explored.


The COVID-19 pandemic has caused unprecedented changes in the dynamics of health care provision and specialist education. The non- pharmaceutical interventions (NPI) such as lockdowns have demanded innovation from leaders in cancer care if delays in access to treatment and specialist education are to be maintained. Some of these changes and innovations have been perceived as positive in various contexts calling upon their maintenance past the pandemic and are termed as ‘silver linings’.

The COVID-19 and Cancer Taskforce is conducting research to harmonise these perceptions and understand the challenges in various resource settings. The purpose of the research is to aggregate a globally representative dataset on the changes and innovations in the practice of cancer care that have occurred due to the COVID-19 pandemic, assess the differences in environment and circumstance in which these changes and innovations have occurred in order to present coherent suggestions on the maintenance of these changes past the crisis of the pandemic. 


The study objectives are to:

  • Elicit the changes and innovations in cancer care, grouping them into different themes representing the continuum of cancer care by conducting structured interviews with professionals of varying background.
  • Conduct an electronic-based survey of oncology professionals globally based on the elicited themes to determine the differences and similarities in the silver linings.
  • Highlight the challenges that will prevent these silver linings from being universally applied to support both recovery and future resilience.


Taskforce Working Group is led by Dr Dorothy Lombe from Lusaka, Zambia, with:

  • Richard Sullivan, United Kingdom,
  • Christopher Booth, Canada,
  • Zipporah Ali, Kenya ,
  • Nirmala Bhoo-Pathy, Malaysia,
  • Carlo Carduff, United Kingdom,
  • Jim Cleary, United States,
  • Matt Jalink, Canada,
  • Tomohiro Matsuda, Japan,
  • Deborah Mukherji, Lebanon,
  • Diana Sarfati, New Zealand,
  • Verna Vanderpuye, Ghana, and
  • Aasim Yusuf, Pakistan.