Among the most vulnerable during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic are patients currently undergoing care and treatment for cancer.  The Quincy Medical Group (QMG) Cancer Institute has taken extra precautions to ensure oncology patients can continue their needed treatments in a safe environment.

QMG Director of Oncology Clinical Services Sarah Nolinwinkler shares, “We are the front line for cancer care in our community; the services we are offering have not waivered and we are continuing an unparalleled care experience for our patients. We are currently following recommendations as guided by the CDC and oncology-specific resources.”

The team of oncologists at QMG is leading efforts and providing their expertise to help patients and staff navigate this difficult time. QMG oncologists evaluate their schedules daily to determine the best way to approach the care they provide to their patients. Many services remain the same with the addition of added measures to protect both patients and staff.

These measures include:

  • All staff is wearing a mask (cloth or procedure) depending upon whether or not they are in direct patient care.
  • Patients are asked to bring and wear a mask, or QMG will provide them with one.
  • Visitors are restricted during this time. Only patients are allowed at this time unless their oncologist feels it necessary that guests attend with the patient.
  • As patients enter the Cancer Institute, a member of the QMG care team is screening for symptoms of COVID-19 and taking action appropriately along with providing reminders to our patients about safe physical distancing and good hand hygiene.
  • The care team is assessing the patient schedule often and shifting patients in order to safely place people in every other treatment chair to uphold the social distancing recommendations.
  • Our staff is performing hourly cleaning on all high touch points within our facility along with disinfecting areas following patient usage.
  • Our staff is performing hand hygiene often and also encouraging our patients to do so as well.

During this time, recommendations are to stay home if at all possible.  However, for patients undergoing cancer treatment that’s not possible.

Nolinwinkler said these extra precautions along with the support of the Cancer Institute care team should help put patients at ease.

“We realize that having a cancer diagnosis can make this unfamiliar pandemic even more frightening and we know that together we will get through this,” she shared. “Our care team is all heart, full of grit, and each member of this team is fighting COVID-19 right alongside with our patients. We continue to take necessary precautions to alleviate those fears so when our patients walk through our doors they feel comforted knowing they can stay the course, remain diligent in protective measures, and focus on their cancer journey.”

When possible, the oncology team is offering telehealth, or virtual, care for patients for their appointments allowing them to connect to the oncologist from their home.

Though worries are heightened around COVID-19, Nolinwinkler wants to remind patients the Cancer Institute team is here for their patients.

“ ‘We are in this together’ are the words of encouragement throughout our nation and it remains true right here in the heart of our community,” she shared. “Our physicians, our care team, and our patients will continue fighting this pandemic together.”

For more information on the QMG Cancer Institute, visit or call 217-277-4070.