Coronavirus Updates for Cancer Center Patients and Families

Updated April 5, 2021

The Cancer Center holds Virtual Town Halls to discuss frequently asked questions related to COVID-19 and explore various topics. Watch the recordings

As we navigate this challenging, stressful time together, we want you to know that we are here for you. We would also like to provide updates on the many precautions we are taking to support broader public health efforts to reduce opportunities for spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19). We are monitoring the situation closely and adapting our policies as needed to ensure the safety of our patients, families and staff. Please note this is a rapidly evolving situation. We will be updating our community regularly with key information. The current surge in cases nationwide has not impacted our ability to provide care safely.

IMPORTANT REMINDER: If you or your child develops a fever and symptoms of respiratory illness, contact your medical provider immediately. Before you go to a doctor’s office or emergency room, call ahead and tell them about your/your child’s symptoms. They will coordinate safe testing and treatment and get you the care you need. 

Urgent care

Our four pediatric urgent care locations remain open with regular hours. Urgent care video visits are also now available as an option for families in PA and NJ.

Our Emergency Department is open. Please only visit our Emergency Department if your child is experiencing a true emergency.

Telehealth options

CHOP has greatly expanded the use of video visits and other telehealth options as an alternative to some in-person visits when it is clinically safe and appropriate to do so.

Your provider’s office will contact you to discuss options for any upcoming appointments. In the meantime, we encourage you to sign in to your MyCHOP account to ensure you can successfully access your account. If you have questions, or need to sign up for MyCHOP, please call your provider’s office.

Find instructions for getting set up for video visits with a CHOP provider.

Please check with your health plan to confirm that your insurance covers video visits with CHOP providers.

The Cancer Center

Q: Are new patients being accepted?

Yes, we are accepting new patients. Second opinion consultations will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Contact our Intake Coordinators at 267-426-0762 to express interest.

Q: Have the hours changed?

No, we are still operating normal hours at our University City, King of Prussia and Voorhees, NJ, sites. Evening hours will continue at University City.

Q: Are visitors allowed?

Restricted visitation procedures are in place for all appointments and hospital visits. To keep our patients, families and staff safe from COVID-19 and other respiratory viral infections, we ask you to reduce the number of parents or caregivers as much as possible to all Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia sites.

Our current COVID-19 restricted visitation policy is that no more than two healthy parents or caregivers (18 and over) are allowed to visit patients in the hospital or accompany patients to any appointment at a CHOP location. Parents and caregivers cannot be ill (must be without fever, cough or other concerning symptoms), nor have testing pending for COVID-19. Siblings are not permitted, with the exception of breastfeeding infants. These procedures are in place during this rapidly changing situation as the prevalence of COVID-19 continues to increase in our community. Per New Jersey regulation, only one caregiver may accompany your child at Specialty Care and Ambulatory Surgery Centers in Voorhees, May’s Landing (Atlantic County) and Princeton.

Q: What changes have been made at the Cancer Center given the COVID-19 pandemic?

Your family will receive a screening call from an oncology nurse on the day prior to your appointment. Also at time of check-in on the day of your scheduled visit, your family will undergo a secondary screening.

Also, you may notice that there are fewer physicians and nurses in the clinic. We are rescheduling some non-urgent appointments and procedures for patients who are off therapy over the next few weeks, so the clinic is far less busy than usual.

Q: Should I cancel my child’s appointment?

Our teams are reviewing each patient’s individual needs to determine if your appointment needs to happen as scheduled or can be postponed to a future date. You will receive a call if rescheduling has been recommended by your clinical team.

Q: My child’s appointment has been rescheduled with a new doctor. Why am I not seeing my regular oncologist today?

In order to support all inpatient and outpatient oncology patient needs at the hospital, your child may see a different provider for their visit. However, the covering provider will receive detailed information about your child and their care.

Q: I haven’t received a call to reschedule. Should I still come in?

Yes, if you have not received a call to reschedule, we are expecting your arrival. If you have made a personal decision to reschedule, please contact our scheduling office at 215-590-3025.

Q: My appointment was canceled. When will it be rescheduled?

The clinical team is reviewing each patient’s unique needs to determine when an in person or video visit is medically necessary.

Q: Who can I call if I have questions?

Our triage nurse is available to answer your questions and connect you with your provider. The nurse can be reached at 215-590-2299, every day from 8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m. If you work with a nurse navigator, they are also a great resource.

Additional safety information during the COVID-19 pandemic

IMPORTANT REMINDER: If you or your child develops a fever and symptoms of respiratory illness, contact your medical provider immediately. Before you go to a doctor’s office or emergency room, call ahead and tell them about your/your child’s symptoms. They will coordinate safe testing and treatment and get you the care you need.

Read more about reduced entry for parents, caregivers and siblings, cleaning protocols, protective masks, and the many other safety measures in place:

Helpful resources

Check out these additional resources to help you keep your family informed and healthy.

We know this is a challenging time and we thank you for your understanding and partnership in keeping our patients, families and staff safe.

Young boy smiling outside

Get a Second Opinion

Our experts are here to review your child’s diagnosis and treatment plan, and work with primary oncologists as needed.

Oncology patient with Mom

Patient-Family Education

Review educational information for individuals and families facing childhood cancer.