Improve cancer care for 250 children in Malawi

 
£13,211
£5,990
Raised
Remaining
Nov 18, 2014

Improving care for children with cancer in Malawi

Dear supporters

With your help hundreds of patients have received lifesaving cancer treatment in the last few years. But the increase in the number of patients accessing treatment - a very positive development - must be matched by increased resources. The team needs your help! 

Treatment of childhood cancer in Malawi has improved significantly since it began in the 1960s. Last year more than 250 children were diagnosed and put on active treatment. This is due to the increasing reputation of the unit and the hard work of the local team - in large part supported by donors like you.

But many children still do not receive the treatment they need to survive and thrive. There are obstacles to further progress that you can help the service to overcome.  

  • Personnel: As doctors, nurses and allied health professionals move through their careers, long-term successors must be trained. Dr George Chagaluka is progressing well in his specialist training as a paediatric oncologist - but additional professionals will be essential. Please donate to support the training of healthcare professionals.
  • Treatment protocols: Vital improvements have been made to treatment guidelines for the cancers most common to children in Malawi. But many children suffer from conditions for which there are only rudimentary strategies for treatment and care. Please donate to support the improvement of treatment for a wider range of childhood cancers.
  • Infrastructure: With positive increases in patient numbers and in treatments available come demands on buildings and equipment. At present, family members - many of whom have travelled many miles to obtain treatment for their loved one - sleep, cook and wash in corridors and beneath outdoor shelters. Please donate to give patients and their families a comfortable environment.   

We appreciate your ongoing support; without the support of the global community many children suffering from cancer in Malawi would not stand a chance.

No child should suffer.

Aug 26, 2014

Improving cancer care for children in Malawi

Dear supporters

290 children were treated last year, meaning the project exceeded its original annual target of 250. 

The project continues to make excellent progress under the leadership of Professor Molyneux. Below are some of the activities of the last five months.

  • Regular twinning support and training for local staff
  • Fortnightly clinic pathological meetings held with surgeons, pathologists and radiologists
  • Ongoing patient and family support in the unit
  • Continuing follow-up visits by a clinical officer on a motorbike
  • Planning underway for an outpatient paediatric oncology facility
  • Inclusion in the Collaborative Wilms’ Tumour Africa Project, a pan-African programme to combat Wilms’ Tumour

 Here are some of our objectives.

  • Increase nursing capacity
  • Establish an outpatient facility at QECH
  • Support patients through drug supplementation, welcome packs and follow-up
  • Continue healthcare and community awareness campaigns
  • Handover of the QECH unit to a Malawian paediatric oncologist

We appreciate your ongoing support; without the support of the global community many children suffering from cancer in Malawi would not stand a chance.

No child should suffer.

Best wishes

World Child Cancer team

Links:

Jun 2, 2014

Improving cancer care for children in Malawi

Dear supporters

290 children were treated last year, meaning the project exceeded its original annual target of 250.

Phase 2 of the Malawi project at the Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital is now well under way.

The project is making excellent progress under the leadership of Professor Molyneux. Here are some of the activities of the last five months:

  • Training for a future Malawian lead in South Africa
  • Regular twinning support and training for local staff
  • Ongoing patient and family support in the unit
  • Continuing follow-up visits by a clinical officer on a motorbike
  • Planning underway for an outpatient paediatric oncology facility
  • Rapid diagnosis confirmation by email link with the team in Newcastle, UK

There is still so much the team can do to improve cancer diagnosis, treatment and care for children in Malawi. Here are some of our objectives:

  • Increase nursing capacity
  • Establish an outpatient facility at QECH
  • Support patients through drug supplementation, welcome packs and follow-up
  • Continue healthcare and community awareness campaigns
  • Handover of the QECH unit to a Malawian paediatric oncologist

Thank you for your ongoing support. You are enabling significant improvements to be made to childhood cancer care in Malawi. The project could not continue like this without your support.

Please continue your support so we can help to treat more children in Malawi.

Best wishes

World Child Cancer team

Links:

Feb 26, 2014

Malawian Child Cancer Project Report

Toys for patients from a corporate supporter
Toys for patients from a corporate supporter

Hello supporters!

Our project in Malawi reached the end of its first 5 year phase of funding in December 2013. We are now concentrating on Phase 2 of the Malawi project at the Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital in Blantyre.

Some highlights from the first 5 years of operation are:

  • An increase in the number of patients newly diagnosed each year, from 200 in 2009 to nearly 300 in 2013
  • Improvements in long-term survival rates - now at 60% for some malignancies such as Burkitt lymphoma
  • A decrease in the number of patients refusing or abandoning treatment due to increased financial support, an emphasis on social support on the ward and active follow-up of patients
  • Improvements in the provision of palliative care for children with incurable cancers
  • Increase in the speed and accuracy of diagnosis thanks to a microscope camera linked online with the twinning team in Newcastle
  • Provision of the first government paid nurse on the ward
  • Collaboration with several other units in Africa to initiate a regional Wilms' tumour treatment protocol and network
  • Sustaining a strong and growing relationship with the twinning partners in both Newcastle and Amsterdam
  • Capacity building through regular staff training and mentoring on the unit
  • Succession planning of the unit leadership through the current specialist training of a Malawian Paediatric Oncologist in South Africa.

The progress made over the last 5 years is staggering, and with the new phase of project planned we aim to implement the following acitvities:

  • Development of shared care and collaboration with other units in Malawi
  • Provide a day care unit for children to receive out-patient chemotherapy safely
  • Build a home-from-home facility for patient's families to stay in during treatment
  • Develop a multi-disciplinary neuro-oncology service
  • Increase the nursing capacity to allow for the service developments
  • Continued patient support for drugs, transport, food
  • Ongoing training and mentoring of local staff
  • Increase awareness campaigns to continue reaching more children with cancer across the country
  • Use of more intensive / complex protocols to increase the survival rate for more malignancies

Without the support of our funders and volunteers the continuation of this project in its new phase of funding would not be possible.

Thank you for your dedication to helping these children and please continue your support so that we can reach more children with cancer in Malawi.

Microscope camera for faster diagnostics
Microscope camera for faster diagnostics
Patients in the play area of the ward at QECH
Patients in the play area of the ward at QECH

Links:

Dec 6, 2013

Improve cancer care for 250 children in Malawi

Hello Supporters!

We are really pleased to say that our project in Malawi continues to make lots of progress and more and more children are receiving treatment for cancer.

Our CEO recently visited the Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital in Blantyre to see for herself exactly where money gets spent. She was amazed at the positivity of all the staff and patients and thrilled to see World Child Cancer's funds making such a difference to the lives of children with cancer. She reported that not only are chemotherapy drugs and equipment in short supply but even basics such as lightbulbs and paper are very hard to come by.

On her visit she was accompanied by a journalist from the Financial Times newspaper who was reporting on the project as part of the Financial Times Seasonal Appeal of which World Child Cancer is the beneficiary. The journalist was also amazed to see how the project works and truly impressed to see that such a little amount of money goes a long way. In particular he found the story of Mr Banda, the hospital outreach worker very inspiring. Mr Banda works for the hospital and travels to patients in remote areas for follow-up appointments. Quite often, these patients would not be able to attend follow-up appointments because of the high cost of travel to the hospital. In some cases this can mean that signs of the cancer returning are not detected and so further treatment cannot be offered. World Child Cancer, together with Mr Banda and your support means that the hospital travels to the patients to ensure that as many children as possible remain free of cancer after treatment.

The full article from the Financial Times along with a video can be seen here:

http://www.ft.com/cms/s/2/3a81760c-55e1-11e3-b6e7-00144feabdc0.html#axzz2mgo20BXh

http://video.ft.com/2899692092001/Fighting-cancer-in-rural-Africa/editorschoice

THANK YOU once again to all of our amazing supporters for allowing us to continue helping these children in Malawi!

Links:

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Organization

Project Leader

Rebecca Ross

London, Greater London United Kingdom

Where is this project located?

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