Barriers to cure for children with cancer in India and strategies to improve outcomes: a report by the Indian Pediatric Hematology Oncology Group.

Pediatr Hematol Oncol 2014 Apr;31(3):217-24

1Pediatric Hematology and Bone Marrow Transplant Unit, Fortis Memorial Research Institute, Gurgaon, India.

The survival of children with cancer in India is inferior to that of children in high-income countries. The Indian Pediatric Hematology Oncology Group (IPHOG) held a series of online meetings via www.Cure4kids.org to identify barriers to cure and develop strategies to improve outcomes. Five major hurdles were identified: delayed diagnosis, abandonment, sepsis, lack of co-operative groups, and relapse. Development of regional networks like IPHOG has allowed rapid identification of local causes of treatment failure for children with cancer in India and identification of strategies likely to improve care and outcomes in the participating centers. Next steps will include interventions to raise community awareness of childhood cancer, promote early diagnosis and referral, and reduce abandonment and toxic death at each center. Starting of fellowship programs in pediatric hemato-oncology, short training programs for pediatricians, publishing outcome data, formation of parent and patient support groups, choosing the right and effective treatment protocol, and setting up of bone marrow transplant services are some of the effective steps taken in the last decade, which needs to be supported further.

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http://dx.doi.org/10.3109/08880018.2014.893596DOI Listing
April 2014
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