The Member of Parliament for the Asikuma/OdobenBrakwa constituency, Hon Georgina Nkrumah Aboah has called for effective collaborative efforts between all stakeholders to curb the disturbing effect of childhood cancer on the future leaders of the country.
She called for a collective resolve for the immediate removal of all financial and geographical barriers that hinder access to treatment and care for sufferers of childhood cancers.
The lawmaker advocated for the amendment of the National Health Insurance Act to include childhood cancers on the list of the National Health Insurance Scheme to enable victims’ access treatment, the creation of a National Cancer Registry to track pediatric cases to assist in research and increase awareness creation about the disease.
Hon Nkrumah Aboah who is a member of the Health Committee of Parliament made theurgent call on the floor in a statement to mark the International Childhood of Cancer Day.
The MP disclosed there only two centers in the whole country that deals with childhood cancer and urged Government to as a matter of priority establish more centers across the country to aid in the fight against the disease.
She also challenged government to award scholarships to pediatricians interested in specializing in childhood cancers in order to develop more specialists to respond to cases promptly.
The Asikuma/OdobenBrakwa Member paid glowing tribute to the Dr Mitchell Memorial Foundation (RoMMeF), an NGO for its singular efforts especially on awareness creation in the fight against childhood cancer in the country.
RoMMeF has translated the early warning signs of the disease into six major Ghanaian languages including Hausa, Ewe, Dagbani, Ga, Nzema and Twi to ensure better understanding.
It has sponsored the treatment of five (5) childhood cancer patients in 2013 and 2014 and is also currently supporting the establishment of Pediatric Oncology Treatment Center in Cape Coast to enhance access to healthcare.
About 250,000 childhood cancer cases are recorded yearly globally among children below fifteen (15) years but Ghana currently has no comprehensive statistical data on the disease.
An estimated 1,000 children are believed to suffer from the disease annually in Ghana with a survival rate lower than 20%.
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