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The 3,800 Club: COVID-19 and cancer patients
Tanya Miller is shown during a chemotherapy appointment.
VANCOUVER -- I have been thinking of you.
I have been thinking of the more than 600 cancer patients who receive chemotherapy every day in our province.
And I have been thinking about your fight against cancer amid the COVID-19 crisis.
I know your journey is a little lonelier these days. You are now going to chemotherapy on your own, instead of with the support of a friend or family member, as BC Cancer takes crucial measures to decrease the risk to vulnerable patients and health-care workers.
I know the coronavirus has added a whole new level of worry and while I'm grateful to have finished my own chemotherapy months ago, I understand your anxiety.
"It's scary for us. It's scary," says 48-year-old Tanya Miller, who is battling breast cancer and undergoes chemotherapy each week.
In December, the Langley, B.C. mom was near death after developing blood clots on her lungs and a serious infection linked to her cancer treatment.
Doctors brought her back after her heart stopped.
She remained in a drug-induced coma for days.
She fought to become strong enough to begin chemotherapy again.
And then the COVID-19 pandemic began.
"You're afraid to go outside. You're afraid to get takeout. Chances are, if I get it (coronavirus), I will not make it through," said an emotional Miller. "People like us will not be OK."
Miller's worry over COVID-19 is coupled with anger.
That's because she has seen the pictures of people crowding together on Metro Vancouver beaches and other places, blatantly ignoring B.C.'s chief medical health officer's warning regarding physical distancing.
"I don't know why they think they are more important than anyone else, why they don't think the rules apply to them," she said.
Doctors across the region have been urging people to stay home and take the steps necessary to help prevent spread of the coronavirus.
Miller is pleading with the public to do the same and give cancer patients and their health-care workers a fighting chance.
Because really, we're all in this together.