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With early studies suggesting that patients with active cancer are particularly susceptible to COVID-19, the current pandemic is forcing palliative care health care professionals to better define our identity as a field.1 With social distancing requirements, should we minimize patient contact to keep our patients and ourselves safe? As a relatively new specialty, are palliative care consults a luxury that we can hold off on to avoid overburdening the medical system? Are we essential medical personnel, or not?
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Corresponding Author: Ambereen K. Mehta, MD, MPH, Palliative Care Program, Department of Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles, 1328 16th St, Room 207, Santa Monica, CA 90404 (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Published Online: May 7, 2020. doi:10.1001/jamaoncol.2020.1938
Conflict of Interest Disclosures: Dr Smith reported receiving personal fees from serving as coeditor, Non-Pain Palliative Symptoms, UpToDate. No other disclosures were reported.
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