Coronavirus Advice

Hi all,
We just had our team meeting in office and the subject of Coronavirus is now a weekly topic. At the moment it’s just the usual hygiene issue, sanitizing gels etc, especially if traveling on public transport. CEO specifically asked me am I higher risk etc. My assumption is I’m not as in remission etc. but wondering whether there is any resources or has anyone else been given any advice on this?


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Hope this helps @dmquinlan. This was posted on Bloodwise FB page last week


Hi David, great topic to raise and thanks @Pisces56 for this advice on the Bloodwise FB page.

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@dmquinlan David, thanks so much for bringing up this topic, it has understandably been a concern to many people.

Louise, thank you so much for posting the link we have put up :blush: This is where we are advising people who get in touch with us to look :+1: We are also suggesting people get in touch with their treatment team too, for more tailored advice.

It’s so understandably to be worried about this, if anyone here is feeling anxious and would like to talk anything through, the forum is always here :+1:

Hope everyone is ok?


hello again everyone!

One of our lovely ambassadors has shared a link to this research study with us Face touching and hand hygiene study We felt it very apt especially with the coronavirus in the news, and wondered if anyone had any questions or concerns around this?

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Sadly, even in remission I think we often have reduced immunity. However I think the best thing is to be extra vigilant in hygiene and maybe avoid hotspots of the virus, such as parts of Italy. I am certainly not panicking and still plan on going on holiday until government advice is not to travel at all.


Hi Joan, that sounds very sensible to me. Take care and yes, perhaps we will always have a reduced immunity.

that’s right @Joan :+1: We encourage everyone to keep on government advice, including their advice on travel if you are planning a trip or have one booked. As you rightly say, Joan, though so understandable, we don’t want people to panic, but just be aware and vigilant.

We’d also encourage people, as mentioned above, for more specific advice to their individual situation, to get in touch with their GP/treatment team.

How have you all been? it can be really daunting to see this in the news so frequently.
How has it been for you all, trying to take precautions?


Hi Su, I am just following government/NHS advice and it is always good to be reminded how I should really wash my hands properly. If anyone coughs or sneezes within a large radius of me I immediately turn away and temporally stop breathing. I am not advocating this and it is not part of official advice and I do remember to start breathing again. I am also spending a fortunate on antiseptic wipes etc. I am not planning to go to any large gatherings. I am also trying to keep this in perspective.

Hi, I’m 4 years 3 months post transplant and I’m due to fly to Tenerife on the 13th, we are staying in Adeje where they have a hotel on lockdown. I’m feeling anxious but I know how much my husband has been looking forward to and needs this holiday. I’m worried that if I ring the hospital for advice that they will advise me not to go …it’s a dilemma but I obviously feel I should put my health first. I’m not sure we will get our money back either if the Government say it’s ok to travel, we have treated ourselves to a luxury trip and will lose a lot of money but again I know my health is more important. Has anybody spoken to there doctor about travel?

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Hi Lisa, what a dilemma, I expect there are so many others grappling with this. I thought it was very telling when you say you are worried that if you ring the hospital for advice that they will advise you not to go. It is so easy for me to say as I am useless at having honest conversations, saying my needs and obviously our husbands have given up so much for us previously, but can you talk to him as you have in your post? Let us know how you get on and I also would be interested in hearing from others. Take care.

@Lisa Hi there Lisa,

I hope you are doing okay? I’m so sorry you have this worry hanging over you, and understandably so. As you say, it can be a really difficult thing to weigh up the risks when wanting to give yourself a break (which you are more than entitled to!) but also wanting to take precautions with your health.

You may have seen this already, but here is the current government for travel to Spain:

I did also speak with the rest of the support line team to see how we can best support you, we wondered if you have medical insurance, and if so, if you have had a chance to speak to the medical insurance company at all?

We thought, the travel agency you booked with or the airline itself, have you had a chance to talk to them at all?

please do feel free to talk through anything you’re worried about Lisa,


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Hi Su,

Yes I do have travel insurance but from what I’ve heard on the tv you may or may not be covered depending on your cover but even if you are unless the area you are travelling to officially becomes a no go area then your insurance don’t have to pay just
because you’re choosing not to travel.

I have sent an email to the Clinical Nurse Specialists at Manchester Royal to see if they can give me any advice.

I suppose I will just see how things pan out over the coming days.

Thank you for your post.


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Thanks Erica,

I’m sure my hubby support my decision if I say I don’t want to go but the problem is I do want to go, I just don’t want to be irresponsible.

It’s a toughie

Thanks for your post


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Hi Lisa. I spoke to my massage therapist today as she is going to Tenerife on Saturday. She is going by plane but then sailing before flying back, so does not have the problem of staying in a hotel complex. However she is taking echinicea to improve her immunity, and uses tea tree on her feet. She is taking antibacterial wipes to wipe her plane seat, tray and the back of the seat in front, as well as the usual antibacterial hand preparations etc. I often wipe a table or tray before use when stopping in a coffee bar etc
I hope you do manage to get away as i know you must be really looking forward to your trip. Let us know how you go on

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@Pisces56, @SuBloodcancerUK, @dmquinlan, @Lisa and @Joan. I just met a friend in a large town near us and she said she could not get antibacterial hand wash anywhere.

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Hi, it depends on the nature of your condition. Some blood cancers leave you with a weaker immune system even if you are in remission. So for example CLL is a cancer of the lymphocytes and it tends to crowd out the healthy ones. In theory we would therefore be at greater risk because we are not as able to create new antibodies to things that we have not seen before. If you do actually catch coronavirus statistics would suggest that people with co-morbidities may be twice as likely to die. Of course right now you are at greater risk of catching the flu unless you are planning on visiting certain parts of the world. But that could easily change. So I don’t know what your specific condition is and what the status of your immune system is. But if you have a weakend immune system then clearly you’d expect to be at a greater risk both of actually catching the disease if exposed and of serious complications.

This link below has the latest figures and is updated several times a day. It also has the data on death rate. People with no comorbidities are currently estimated to have a 0.9% chance of dying if they catch the disease whereas those with cancer 7.6% are estimated to die if they catch the disease (note these numbers may go up or down as we understand more and as the many cases that are not yet resolved either get better or die).

See for the source of that data and up to the hour incidence numbers per country etc (look for demographics link)

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Hi Lisa, I would think that if you wanted to build a case to cancel and get the money back you would need a doctors not saying that whilst it is advisable in general terms for others to go the risk would be too high for you given the situation. But to be quite honest perhaps traveling to an area that has not been declared to be endemic is no more risk than traveling within the UK at the moment where we may be about to see an increase in cases. As others have said, talk to your own team. Bear in mind you are more compromised immune wise and take precautions if you do decide to go. Of course ironically in some areas so many people are staying away that it may even be safer at the moment. I was seriously considering jumping on a plane to Venice where I have always wanted to go and apparently it is more empty now than it has ever been and all the boats have been disinfected… Of course the risk is also that you might go abroad and find that on your return you are told to self isolate (or perhaps in future be forcibly quarantined) if you went somewhere that saw a sudden spike of cases while there.


Thanks Adrian, yes with the virus spreading as it is I don’t think Tenerife will be any riskier than the UK. I will just take extra precautions, I usually use antibacterial wipes on the plane anyway. I had AML, I will see if the specialist nurses reply to my email if not I may ring the hospital and try and get hold of someone.


I am 8 years post transplant with what remains a weak immune system and personally I would not go. For me just too risky.

If I were you however I would run it past my consultant, and if he said I was good to go then take all the precautions already discussed and travel.
If his advice is that it is too risky then ask him to write a letter to this effect to present to your travel agent/airline/hotel/travel insurance.
Both Ryanair and Easyjet for example have been extremely sympathetic with me and offered flight credits for evidenced last minute cancellations (re health).

Whilst I have the annual flu jab, this virus is more contagious than flu, can survive on a hard surface for 5-9 days and be caught simply by breathing the same air as a carrier (<2 metres) who himself demonstrates no symptoms. This is a very bad situation for us.