Forthcoming Issue 3 Delays in access to pediatric oncology care: perspectives from eight partner hospitals

Main Article Content

L Klootwijk
L Apadet
F Njuguna
I Nzamu
G Chagaluka
B Ardianto
N M Sari
E L Majaliwa
A Baloku Zejnullahu
M Huibers
G Kaspers
S Mostert

Abstract

Introduction


The majority of newly diagnosed children with cancer live in low- and middle income countries (LMIC) where challenges in access to diagnosis and treatment cause low survival rates. This study explores the delays in access to pediatric oncology care at eight twinning partner hospitals in Malawi, Kenya, Tanzania, Kosovo and the Netherlands.


Methods


This study was a cross-sectional study using a semi structured questionnaire to assess challenges in access to childhood cancer care in eight institutions in twinning partnership constructions. In-charges of pediatric oncology units were asked to participate in the questionnaire.


Results


In-charges of eight twinning partnership hospitals responded to the questionnaire. Differences in availability of diagnostics and treatment was seen between settings. Factors contributing to delays on community- and primary/ secondary care level were reported by African and Asian respondents. Factors included financial constraints, alternative beliefs and use of traditional complementary and alternative medicine. On tertiary care level respondents from Africa and Asia indicated challenges with availability of certain diagnostic and treatment modalities and experienced staff availability. Diagnosis delay was reported to be longer than treatment delay in all settings. Majority (N=7) indicated parent delay to be longer than doctor delay. Differences in diagnoses or treatment delay were observed for different types or stages of cancer.


Conclusion


This study showed that the different types of delay influence different aspects of access to childhood cancer care in different LMIC settings. These findings imply that a multi factorial approach is needed to assure timely access to childhood cancer care to improve survival.

Article Details

How to Cite
Forthcoming Issue 3: Delays in access to pediatric oncology care: perspectives from eight partner hospitals. (2024). South African Journal of Child Health, 18(2), e1954. https://doi.org/10.7196/
Section
Research

How to Cite

Forthcoming Issue 3: Delays in access to pediatric oncology care: perspectives from eight partner hospitals. (2024). South African Journal of Child Health, 18(2), e1954. https://doi.org/10.7196/

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