Editor’s Note: This article was updated on February 7, 2017.

The American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) released a statement condemning the implicit limitations to research and medical advances of the immigration restrictions recently imposed by President Trump.1

The immigration ban on 7 Muslim-majority countries imposed by Mr Trump’s executive order prevents researchers, students, and patients from entering the United States. The Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota stated that 20 of the clinic’s patients are affected by the ban.2

The ASCO statement notes that tens of thousands of health care professionals attend ASCO meetings on a yearly basis. One effect of the immigration ban will be a preclusion of leading scientists and oncologists from the affected countries from these meetings, which are important forums for global collaboration in health care.

It’s critical that the scientific world continues to collaborate irrespective of political boundaries. The far-reaching implications for health care as a result of this immigration ban are myriad, and the risk to society is significant.

Patients, health care professionals—or anyone else who is affected by this immigration ban—are encouraged to share their stories with ASCO by e-mailing CancerIsGlobal@asco.org.

References

  1. ASCO statement on the U.S. Presidential executive order on entry into the United States. American Society of Clinical Oncology website. https://connection.asco.org/magazine/society-member-news/asco-statement-us-presidential-executive-order-entry-united-states. Published January 30, 2017. Accessed January 31, 2017.
  2. Media statement from Mayo Clinic regarding immigration/travel executive order. Mayo Clinic website. http://newsnetwork.mayoclinic.org/discussion/media-statement-from-mayo-clinic-regarding-immigrationtravel-executive-order/. Published January 30, 2017. Accessed January 31, 2017.