Burkitt lymphoma is one of the most common childhood cancers in equatorial Africa. It is highly curable, yet most children with Burkitt lymphoma never reach a hospital. Even if they do, most parents cannot pay for the costs of treatment, including necessary tests. Undergoing treatment results in loss of family income and additional costs for food, accommodation, and transportation. Health care professionals often lack training in managing this cancer and treatment side effects.
Burkitt lymphoma is a fatal cancer if left untreated. Children who reach a hospital capable of giving appropriate care have a very good chance of cure. This cancer is highly responsive to treatment, so results can be seen in a short time. The International Network for Cancer Treatment and Research (INCTR) has designed a simple treatment plan for Burkitt lymphoma that can be safely delivered in African hospitals. INCTR also trains doctors and nurses to manage children with this cancer.
250 children will have a chance of being cured. Their families will receive the financial support to cover other costs associated with treatment, including food and transportation. This project helps to improve survival rates through the training of doctors and nurses in the management of children, not only with Burkitt lymphoma, but with other cancers, too. Through the documentation of results and patient outcomes, African doctors may even be able to improve treatment results.
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