World Health Organization has called upon countries to invest and establish childhood cancer centres of excellence and care networks to promote early detection for better outcomes and survival of childhood cancers victims.
According to the organization for a child living in a low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) the likelihood of surviving cancer is less than 30 percent. However, survival rates go up to over 80 percent for children living in high-income countries who can access optimal care.
Low survival in these countries has been attributed to incorrect diagnosis, insufficient diagnostic capacity and delays in treatment and treatment abandonment.
A global survey revealed that only 20 percent of countries reported having early detection programmes or guidelines to strengthen early diagnosis of childhood cancer symptoms at the primary-care level.
This was disclosed yesterday during Childhood Cancers Day commemoration where the global childhood cancer community celebrates in a collaborative campaign to raise awareness about childhood cancer and to express support for children and adolescents with cancer, the survivors and their families.
Through WHO Global Initiative for Childhood Cancer established in 2018, the organization with the support of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital aims to address these factors and double childhood cancer survival rates to 60 percent globally, by 2030.
Latest report by the National Cancer Institute indicates that Leukemia is the most common accounting for 15 percent of all childhood cancers in the country.
Leukemia is followed by brain tumors at 11 per cent, lymphomas at 10 per cent while other cancers account for 47 per cent.