To fight cancer in children, Founder, Dorcas Cancer Foundation, Dr. Joseph Adedayo, said early detection is key to its successful treatment.
She said if cancer prevalence must be reduced in Nigeria, citizens should seek regular medical checkups and report health issues to specialists for examination.
Speaking during the launch of Childhood Cancer Handbook Series by the foundation in Lagos recently, Adedayo said issues around cancer in the country was more serious than lots of people think, adding that as a medical practitioner specialised in that area, she sees pathetic cases that throws her into deep reflection.
“While we continuously advocate for early detection and how much cancer patients need fund for treatment, we should not forget the doctors and other health workers who sometimes feel frustrated due to many factors. They need the skills, tools and strategies to cope with burnouts.
“The ultimate goal is to be able to improve the quality of care for cancer patients. It is stressful being a healthcare provider in any field but more so with cancer.
Cancer patients remain with their healthcare providers for years. I have patients who I have been in relationship with for more than five years because they survive and they also have to keep seeing me for their appointments,” she said.
Speaking at the sideline of the event, a digital health expert, Dr. Yetunde Fatogun said a lot of people do not know that children can come down with cancer, hence the late presentation experienced.
She said: “If you have been treating your child for fever for a long time, the best approach is to broaden the scope of examination to know what exactly the issue is.”
On her part, Head of Programmes, Dorcas Cancer Foundation, Dr. Adepeju Adeniran Daodu, said beyond the treatment of cancers in children, there was need to make the scourge a public health concern in the country, adding that the focus on proper diagnosis, proper referral system and treatment facilities should be the priority of the government and stakeholders.