Improving the quality of cancer care in African children

Summary INCTR is working to create a regional collaborative cancer network to improve early diagnosis and treatment in children with cancer.
This project provides access to comprehensive cancer care to children in northern Uganda who are treated by St Mary's Hospital Lacor in Gulu. The project will pay for for costs of diagnosis and treatment and cover families' expenses including transportation, pathology, treatment, food, accommodation, psychosocial support, education for children undergoing treatment, and costs of diagnosis and treatment. It also provides training for health care personnel caring for children with cancer, and public awareness to increase the speed of diagnosis.

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The Challenge: Seventy cases of childhood cancer are seen by St Mary's Hospital Lacor each year - St Mary's is the only hospital in northern Uganda able to treat childhood cancer, yet most children with cancer may never reach St Mary's. But they do, their parents cannot pay for the costs of diagnosis, treatment, necessary tests, local accommodation, food and transportation.

Meeting the Challenge All health care professionals need training and resources to effectively manage childhood cancer in order to minimize delays in initiating treatment. Many childhood cancers (80% in high income countries) are curable if diagnosed early, treated promptly and cared for effectively. St Mary's uses the International Network for Cancer Treatment and Research's (INCTR) simple protocol for the treatment of Burkitt lymphoma and have achieved excellent results in a number of African centers. INCTR will work with the Lacor staff to design treatment plans and public education, as well as teaching courses in the management of childhood cancers. It will also work with locally based NGOs s to develop a regional collaborative network to improve detection, early diagnosis and treatment.

Long-Term Impact 200 children will have a chance of cure by having access to cancer treatment and supportive care. Families will receive support for food, accommodation, transportation, phsycological support and education. This project helps to improve the quality of African children's lives by training staff in the management of childhood cancer and educating the public to improve time to diagnosis. It can serve as a model of care for other centers in northern Uganda, or at similar levels of development interested in developing or participating in childhood cancer programs.

This project has been approved by Global Giving and is now open to donations to those who wish to give. The hyperlink to the project page is: http://go.gg/35580.

For a view of Lacor click on relevant item from September 2018

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