HMH Urges Patients to Schedule Cancer Screenings

Harrison Memorial Hospital (HMH) has joined a nationwide effort to encourage patients to resume appropriate screening to detect cancer early.
HMH is urging people across the country to talk with their health care provider to resume regular primary care checkup and recommended cancer screening. This has the potential to lessen the negative impact that the pandemic is having on identifying and treating people with cancer. Throughout the summer and fall, HMH will be promoting the return to screening initiative at various events and with several businesses in our communities.
Throughout the pandemic, many healthcare resources were redirected to combat rising COVID-19 cases and to prevent the spread of the virus. Elective medical procedures, including cancer screening, were largely put on hold at the onset of the pandemic. The impact was immediate as screening related procedures dropped drastically in March and May 2020 according to the American Cancer Society (ACS). Estimates also project 35% of Americans missed routine cancer screening due to COVID-19 related fears and service disruptions. ACS foresees that the pandemic-related reductions in health care access and cancer screening will result in a short-term drop in cancer diagnoses and a later corresponding increase in late-state diagnoses and preventable deaths.
“Simply put, regular cancer screening tests can improve and save your life,” said Dr. Stephen Toadvine, HMH Chief Executive Officer. “Screening increases the chance of detecting some cancers early, when they may be easier to treat. We’re encouraging everyone in our community to talk to their doctor or a health care professional about getting on track with their recommended cancer screening.”
Screening refers to testing individuals who have no signs or symptoms of disease. It is critical to ensure that patients with signs or symptoms associated with cancer undergo diagnostic evaluation as soon as possible. Breast cancer remains the leading cause of cancer death among women and colorectal cancer is the third most common cause of death among men and women in the U.S., yet nearly one in three people for whom screening is recommended were not up-to-date with screening prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. 
HMH wants to alleviate concern to the public and ensure patients, visitors and employees that patient safety is a high priority. HMH has numerous infection control methods in place. In addition, to all staff members wearing masks, the HMH Certified Health Care Environmental Services Technicians complete daily terminal cleaning on every surface in both clinic and public spaces each day using anti-microbial disinfectant. HMH is also a PūrHospital™, which means HMH has installed a system called Pūrgenix™ throughout the hospital. The Pūrgenix™ technology uses ultraviolet light to deactivate or kill airborne bacteria and viruses.
For more information, please call 859-234-2300 or visit our website at