In an effort to standardize the treatment of cancer in Africa and improve its quality, comprehensive national network began cooperation in the fight against cancer with the cancer centers of the continent to establish treatment guidelines based on local conditions.
African Oncology combined group consists of 30 regional cancer centers in 12 countries in sub-Saharan Africa, including Ghana, Nigeria, Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, Burundi, Tanzania, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Malawi, Rwanda and Botswana. Over the past 2 years African joint force to combat cancer adopted 25 guidelines, which cover about 80% of cancer cases observed in the countries of sub-Saharan Africa.
Country staff, which also includes other US charitable group, intend to complete the development of additional guidance in the next year, which, in turn, will be about 97% of cancer cases in the region.
However, the creation and implementation of the guidelines - are two different things, partly because of the high cost of anti-cancer drugs in Africa. Most cancer drugs are not available at the local level, and can be imported only from other countries. According to experts, the cost of anti-cancer drugs is particularly high in this region of Africa, where about 75% of people live on less than $ 1 a day.
Robert Carlson, MD, in a recent press release addressed to the problem of the high cost of cancer drugs in Africa. "Standardizing Practice makes drug market more predictable, which helps in the negotiation of price reduction. It also allows for more regional training - he says about the new guidelines for African countries. - Common guidelines for countries in sub-Saharan Africa are part of the rapidly expanding global program. "
Carlson, a former oncologist at Stanford University in California involved in African projects, visited the continent 12 times in recent years. Numerous officials and cancer centers also attended the coalition countries in recent years.
Harmonization of guidelines includes the current leadership of the United States and highlights the following points:
- Standard therapy is usually available in Africa;
- extended therapy, limited access.
The third category includes unique options for the region, "innovative" ways in which patients receive support and treatment on the spot in the absence of oncologists.
It is estimated that in the next 20 years, the incidence of cancer in Africa will double. The most common cancers are breast cancer , cervical, prostate, colon and liver, which in total account for about 50% of all new cases. Currently, lung cancer is not a serious disease in Africa, because of the growing popularity of tobacco campaigns.
On the other hand, health claims have become more common in Africa. "The emergence of legal proceedings in cases of conflicts of interest creates an interest in documenting the evidence for treatment decisions," - experts say.
In addition, life expectancy is increasing in the region, up from 48 years in the past decade to 60 years, and the development of cancer is most likely in old age.