Love Your Melon injects $30,000 into early childhood cancer treatment

Love Your Melon injects $30,0 ‘Love Your Melon’ (LYM), a charitable organization with a mission to improve the lives of children with cancer, had in the last nine months supported the healthcare institutions taking care of over 32 patients with $30,000 across the country.

The move is geared towards enabling more early childhood cancer patients to have limitless access to effective health care to ease the burden on parents of such children.

This is because children in Lower and Middle Income economies were four times more likely to die from childhood cancers as compared to developed economies.

This is because their illnesses were often misdiagnosed or forced to abandon treatment due to its high cost as many health professionals entrusted to care for them often lack specialized training.

That had resulted in dire consequences of the global burden of the disease and must be reduced as a prerequisite for addressing the social and economic inequity, stimulate growth and accelerate sustainable development.

Mr Emmanuel Ayire Adongo, the Sub-Saharan Africa Regional Coordinator for World Child Cancer (WCC) made the disclosure when he visited some of the children with the disease receiving treatment at the Cape Coast Teaching Hospital (CCTH).

The WCC is a UK-based NGO, with a subsidiary in Ghana, working with partners including LYM, UBS Optimus Foundation, DFID, British Foreign School Society (BFSS) in collaboration with the Ministry of Health and it’s allied agencies.

He said the charitable organization in collaboration with CCTH signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with three health facilities for expansion of childhood cancer services.

They were the Agogo Presbyterian, Korle Bu Teaching and Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospitals.

Globally, about 70 percent of cancer-related deaths occur in Lower and Middle Income Countries (LMICs) with 24.1 million new cases estimated to occur by 2030.

Mr Adongo indicated that childhood cancers have been identified as the leading cause of death in children under 18 years with 300,000 new cases expected to be diagnosed each year globally.

To address these concerns, WHO had announced a new Global Initiative for Childhood Cancers (GICC), to achieve at least 60 percent survival rate for children with cancer, thereby, saving an additional one million lives.

To ease the pace of achieving the global mission set out by WHO, Mr Adongo said the support for early childhood cancers was key to easing the enormous phenomenon of the financial burden of diagnosis, treatment, care and transportation for patients and families, hence, the support.

Particularly, he announced that the WCC and its partners had supported the Korle Bu Teaching Hospital, Oncology Unit of the Child Health Department to develop the first Centre of Excellence for paediatric oncology in West Africa.

The centre is currently strategically positioned to provide critical skills and improve the quality of paediatric cancer care in the subregion while providing universally accessible and locally-owned cancer services, rather than the ad-hoc projects measure currently in place.

It will train paediatric oncologists across Sub-Saharan Africa, as well as nurses, pharmacists, surgeons, radiologists, pathologists and haematologists and act as a model to demonstrate how childhood cancer can be treated successfully and cost-effectively in other comparable settings.

Dr Emmanuela Amoako, a Paediatrician with the CCTH and a scholarship beneficiary said the gesture by the WCC, LYM and partners to train medical doctors was immeasurable and called for increased assistance to reach out to more patients.


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