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    Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has affected more than 96 million people worldwide, leading the World Health Organization (WHO) to declare a pandemic in March 2020. Although an optimal medical treatment of COVID-19 remains uncertain, an unprecedented global effort to develop an effective vaccine hopes to restore pre-pandemic conditions. Since cancer patients as a group have been shown to be at a higher risk of severe COVID-19, the development of safe and effective vaccines is crucial. However, cancer patients may be underrepresented in ongoing phase 3 randomised clinical trials investigating COVID-19 vaccines. Therefore, we encourage stakeholders to provide real-time data about the characteristics of recruited participants, including clearly identifiable subgroups, like cancer patients, with sample sizes large enough to determine safety and efficacy. Moreover, we envisage a prompt implementation of suitable registries for pharmacovigilance reporting, in order to monitor the effects of COVID-19 vaccines and immunisation rates in patients with cancer. That said, data extrapolation from other vaccine trials (e.g. anti-influenza virus) showed a favourable safety and efficacy profile for cancer patients. On the basis of the evidence discussed, we believe that the benefits of the vaccination outweigh the risks. Consequently, healthcare authorities should prioritise vaccinations for cancer patients, with the time-point of administration agreed on a case-by-case basis. In this regard, the American Society of Clinical Oncology and the European Society of Medical Oncology are advocating for cancer patients a high priority status, in the hope of attenuating the consequences of the pandemic in this particularly vulnerable population. Copyright © 2021 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

    Citation

    Chiara Corti, Edoardo Crimini, Paolo Tarantino, Gabriella Pravettoni, Alexander M M Eggermont, Suzette Delaloge, Giuseppe Curigliano. SARS-CoV-2 vaccines for cancer patients: a call to action. European journal of cancer (Oxford, England : 1990). 2021 May;148:316-327

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    PMID: 33770576

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