INCTR and Children in Crossfire (CiC) Visit Tikur Anbessa Hospital, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

In May 2011, Dr Trish Scanlan (INCTR) and Matthew Banks (CiC) visited the Tikur Anbessa Hospital. Dr Scanlan and Mr Banks have been instrumental in the successful implementation of a comprehensive Pediatric Oncology Program in Tanzania in recent years. Both organizations are planning to expand their programs into Ethiopia and are looking at how best to apply the lessons learned in Tanzania to pediatric oncology in Ethiopia.

The visit represented a great opportunity to see the ward spaces, to meet the people at the Tikur Anbessa Hospital, and to get first hand insight into the plans for developing the Ethiopian program. Dr Scanlan undertook a detailed clinical assessment of the current resources and needs at the hospital. On the ‘non-clinical’ side, Matthew and CiC bring experience and skills in designing and implementing development programs. Matthew evaluated the opportunities for developing a psychosocial program alongside the clinical work to bring a holistic approach to the Ethiopian program.

The primary lesson to be applied from Tanzania is the need for an overall plan, clearly defined funding requirements and a step by step approach to implementing new activities. These plans are now in development. The visit was a great success in that it has given clarity to the project team in Ethiopia of how they can learn from the experiences in Tanzania to implement an effective program more rapidly and efficiently.

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