DAR ES SALAAM, Tanzania, Sept. 27, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — National Association of Chronic Disease Directors CEO John W. Robitscher, MPH, participated in the 4th biannual Greater Horn Oncology Symposium (GHOS) held Sept. 23-25.
“We are absolutely thrilled by this opportunity to leverage NACDD’s latest breakthroughs in prevention programs, early detection and diagnosis, treatment and palliative care against this unique audience of international, lifesaving physicians and oncology experts in an area of the world stymied by extreme health deficits,” Robitscher said.
“Despite cancer remaining a leading cause of preventable death in Tanzania, this country of nearly 45 million people currently has only one operative cancer treatment center, accessible to only one percent of the population. The need is dire, immediate, and with each passing day, there are lives lost from cancer that could have been prevented or treated effectively. With inadequacies this dramatic, any delay in care is tantamount to a death sentence, which is why we agreed to pilot our first efforts abroad in Tanzania,” he concluded.
During symposium talks, Robitscher and John W. Patton, Vice President of NACDD’s Center for Partnerships and Innovation, shared a presentation featuring anecdotal evidence on the type of work NACDD has done to promote prevention tactics and tools in the U.S., focusing specifically on their work in rural America, where demographic indicators, such as poverty and immediate access to medical care, are analogous to those in Tanzania.
The talk promoted innovation and new solutions for care and treatment in an effort to spark dialogue as well as fruitful connection among the healthcare communities’ distinguished attendees. The aim is to listen and learn from Tanzanian experts, physicians, and the impacted communities about how NACDD can help them to advance their ongoing efforts.
“By bringing together physicians and oncology industry members from abroad, we hope to encourage collaboration on developing local cancer care, improving the prevention, detection, and treatment of cancer in Africa,” said Mira Shah, Vice President, RadiatingHope, and organizer of the symposium.
“We believe that prevention starts with education and awareness — in ways that will be timely, culturally appropriate, modern, and relevant,” echoed Patton. “We plan to work with local and international cutting-edge partners leading the industry to tailor resources that aim serve the critical health needs of the public.”
Collaborative efforts between these leading health industry organizations have already resulted in brokered plans to build a comprehensive cancer center in northern Tanzania, including an outpatient clinic with exam rooms, chemotherapy infusion bays, vaults for equipment for delivery of radiation therapy, a brachytherapy unit, PACS system, MRI, treatment planning centers and CT diagnostic scanning capabilities.
Long-term plans include medical training to develop a greater number of local physicians, radiation therapists and nurses to maintain permanent, established, and effective cancer care in this region. NACDD is committed to increasing awareness of the condition of cancer care and radiotherapy available in Tanzania and the East African region.
Learn more at chronicdisease.org.
SOURCE National Association of Chronic Disease Directors