International Childhood Cancer Day (ICCD) is celebrated every year in the month of February to address the challenges and issues impacting the childhood cancer patients and the survivors. It also spotlights the need for more equitable and better access to treatment and care for all children with cancer, everywhere.
There are more than 200,000 children that are affected by cancer each year and 80% of them live in low to middle income countries. Due to lack of quality treatment, delayed/ unavailability of proper drug supply, lack of consistent and reliable care, there is only 20-30% chance of survival for children in these countries.
Critical gaps exist that prevent successful treatment in developing countries. Following are problem areas specific to resource limited countries i.e Pakistan, India, Bangladesh to name a few.
- 80% of the children diagnosed with cancer are in developing countries
- Less than 40% of all cancer patients in these countries are able to receive health care.
- Lack of diagnostic and treatment facilities are not available to over 60% of the patients.
- Health authorities around the world recognize the value of palliative care in the treatment of children with cancer. Majority of these countries lack the palliative care centers that can help early diagnosis and treatment of children.
The theme of the cancer awareness campaign uses the hashtag “We can, I can “. The campaign encourages all of us from different walk of life to stand in solidarity and raise awareness. CloudClinik EMR is a socially responsible organization that realizes the importance of ubiquitous & quality health care. The awareness and support plays a vital role in mobilizing local government to fund the building of more cancer care centers and to invest in health care with modern facilities.
Carefully implemented child cancer prevention and treatment program has already shown results. In several LMIC (Low and Middle income countries) better care, affordable good quality medication and health care coverage has improved the survival rates by 30% within less than a decade.