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Sunday, October 2, 2022

Government, UCI in Deliberate Moves to Close Cancer Care Gap

The government of Uganda in conjunction with the Uganda Cancer Institute (UCI) is taking deliberate steps to solve the barriers to access to cancer care and also to close the cancer care gap.

According to a statement released by the UCI, government has fronted four major steps to triumph over the cancer care gap challenge including the national cancer control plan, setting up regional cancer centers, increasing funding to cancer care and expanding care, training and research capacity at the Uganda cancer institute Mulago National referral hospital.

The National cancer control plan details Uganda Cancer Institute plans to tackle the cancer challenge in Uganda which include seven pillars. These pillars include health promotion and cancer prevention, early detection, diagnosis and treatment, palliative care, cancer survivorship, cancer surveillance and research, policy and advocacy, special populations-children, refugees, albinos among others.  

“We believe that these interventions will significantly reduce the cancer care gaps in Uganda and improve survival from cancer,” the statement read.

According to public relations officer Christine Namulindwa, all care at the UCI is provided free such that economics is not a determinant of treatment outcomes, and with the functionalization of the regional cancer centres, even geography will cease to be a determinant of cancer survival in Uganda.

The government also intends to address most of the barriers to Cancer care which include poverty and socio- economic factors like transport and cost of care, geographical divide where rural people have limited access to care, and age where older people tend to get less care.

In a public notice, the UCI informed the public of the established care home that will house the patients who have nowhere to stay in the due course of the treatment and care at the UCI and to reside in the home one must register with the medical social workers.

“This is to inform the general public that the UCI has established a care home for patients who have nowhere to stay in Kampala during the treatment and care at the Uganda Cancer Institute,” the notice read.

Government intends to reduce the number of people who  are diagnosed with cancer every year as it  is estimated over 33,000 Ugandans are victims and only about 7400 make it for care at the Cancer Institute.

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