Dear colleagues and friends,

The global pandemic of SARS-Cov-2 (COVID19) is presenting extremely challenging times for all those working to care for children with cancer and their families around the world. Many of you have had to change the way you provide care and contribute your staff and personal efforts towards other services in your hospitals.  Every service is having to plan and re-plan as local situations are evolving rapidly.

The SIOP Board of Directors has been working with colleagues from St Jude global programme and clinicians working in the Lombardy area of Italy to provide our members and other healthcare professionals with easier access to what is currently known on the impact of the virus on the paediatric population and the management of children with cancer. We have just published the first of two planned articles in Pediatric Blood and Cancer, which is available as open access to all (click on the article title below to access full article or use the button below).

Early advice on managing children with cancer during the COVID-19 pandemic and a call for sharing experiences.

We will be publishing a second article in a few weeks to provide more detailed guidance on service planning and modifications, with a focus on therapy for the six most curable cancers that are the initial focus of the WHO global initiative on childhood cancers (ALL, Burkitt and Hodgkin lymphoma, retinoblastoma, Wilms tumour, low grade glioma) for those working in the most resource-limited settings.  SIOP is also supporting colleagues at St Jude in their plans to create a world-wide registry for reporting cases of COVID-19 infection in children with cancer, so that we can all learn and be better prepared for ongoing and future such challenges.

This will sit alongside a new platform that will host COVID-19 related information and links to resources, as well as including the many capabilities for education and guidelines, live meetings and discussion forum, that many of you are used to using on the Cure4kids platform. Both should be going live within the next 2 weeks.  Until such time as the SIOP-St Jude platform is ready, please do avail yourselves of our resource-sharing through the SIOP website (use the button below or click here)

In the meantime, we hope that you and your families are safe and coping well during these rapidly changing times.

Kathy Pritchard-Jones, SIOP President

on behalf of the SIOP Board of Directors