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The quality of cancer care in Nigeria is low

The quality of cancer care in Nigeria is low
Photo by National Cancer Institute- Ask Nigeria

What can Nigeria do to ensure access to cheap cancer treatment?

Michael Olatunde Oni is a professor of radiation and health physics and a former dean of the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology’s Faculty of Pure and Applied Sciences in Ogbomoso, Oyo State. He discusses what Nigeria should do to provide access to affordable cancer care in this discussion with SADE OGUNTOLA. He was requested to elaborate on this novel treatment approach because he is providing a fresh viewpoint on the fight against cancer. He claimed that because cancer affects people worldwide, a more radical approach is needed than what is currently being provided in Nigeria and Africa as a whole. Since the turn of the twenty-first century, there has been a significant advancement in cancer therapy in many industrialized nations with high Human Development Index ratings, making many diseases curable.

According to records, 63 percent of the 76 million cancer deaths that take place worldwide each year, including those in Africa, come from poor nations. The constant effort to advance existing facilities and treatment modalities, such as radiotherapy (RT), has advanced from 2D to 3D attainable in 1990; stereotactic RT, intensity modulated RT, image guided RT, in 2000; volumetric modulated arc therapy, tomotherapy, cyberknife, LINAC MR, and ion beam therapy, in 2020 – all to ensure a maximum radiation dose sufficient to cure cancer (OAR).

Radiation therapy remains an important component in cancer treatment.

Unfortunately, cancer treatment with dose conformity to imaging anatomic target in 3D/4D radiotherapy and OAR sparing is still relatively rare in Nigeria and other African nations. This is due to the fact that, with the exception of a relatively small number of private medical facilities, the treatment equipment still primarily uses 2D and 3D scales from the year 1990. It should be mentioned that radiation therapy, one of the main cancer treatment modalities, continues to play a significant role. About half of all cancer patients receive radiation therapy at some point in their illness, and RT accounts for 40% of cancer cures.

Insufficient RT centres around the globe demonstrate the lack of treatment facilities in Lower and Middle Income Countries (LMICs), including Nigeria and other sub-Saharan African countries. The expense of purchasing and maintaining the treatment devices and related software is one of the factors limiting RT resources. The treatment planning software is restricted and proprietary. He is advocating for the integration and/or adoption of open-access Monte Carlo (MC) simulation software that have been evaluated and benchmarked for use in radioprotection, treatment monitoring, and external and internal RT.

Will the treatment option be applicable to all cancer types?

Yes, if used effectively, this option can provide early cancer detection for all cancer types, imaging and dose planning, and treatment simulation with integrated quality control, assessment, and assurance for both external and internal RT. Chemotherapy and radiotherapy are still viable options. It aims to increase the availability and affordability of radiotherapy, and if the early detection mode of it is adequately harnessed and exploited, early and self-detection of tumors is conceivable with this option. If cancer is diagnosed early enough, it is curable.

Adoption of new technology can occasionally be hampered in many developing nations by issues with electricity, machine cost, and manpower. Does this alternative, in your opinion, have a chance of being implemented in Nigeria? The difficulties that Nigeria and other LMICs are currently having with cancer detection and treatment include all of the elements that you listed. Adopting the open access MC simulation technology makes it independent of local power supplies because it is mobile and cloud-based, and because it is open access, its use is very flexible and affordable.

The nation should face cancer treatment radically.

Many cancers are treatable in nations with high human development indicents thanks to significant advancements in cancer treatment and understanding. What needs to be changed in Nigeria to guarantee that many cancers are also treatable? Nigeria needs to implement radical cancer treatment. Increase the number of treatment facilities and furnish them with modern hardware and software. Adopt open access technology and encourage its use in research, education, and cancer detection and treatment. Encourage the clinic’s practitioners and the researchers to stop the brain drain from this specialized field. The country’s various levels of government ought to participate actively. He is extremely optimistic that the number of successful cancer treatment cases will rise if every local government region provides facilities and support for cancer research, early identification, and treatment, as was done during the COVID-19 epidemic.


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Admin
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23 days ago

The quality of cancer care in Nigeria is low – What can Nigeria do to ensure access to cheap cancer treatment? – Express your point of view.

Last edited 23 days ago by AN-Toni
Abusi
Member
8
23 days ago

Actually this is very true. Cancer care in Nigeria is very low. We really need to raise awareness on this terrible cancer. Our hospitals should also be upgraded to contain this disease.

Member
8
23 days ago

This is, in fact, completely accurate. Support for cancer patients in Nigeria is dismal. This awful cancer needs much more attention. Our healthcare facilities also need to be improved so that we can control this outbreak.

Member
8
23 days ago

In has much as our government officials travel outside the country for treatment less attention will be paid to medical development and solutions in the country. We need to increase awareness and make our government to see the need to find better solution to Cancer Care and treatment.

Member
8
23 days ago

Government should me held accountable for this. Our healthcare service needs to be as quality and standard like other country’s in order to be able to address such dire ailments.

Member
8
23 days ago

With the high record in ground, i feel we really need to raise awareness on this terrible cancer. Our hospitals should also be upgraded to contain this disease.

Member
8
23 days ago

The major problem is our government who seek treatment outside the shore of this country. Cancer is one of the most deadly ailment that has ever happened to man and such must be treated with urgency. We need to call on all stakeholders, NGOs to help improving and advancing medications in Cancer treatment. More than ever before aware should also be created.

Member
8
23 days ago

The absence of treatment facilities in Lower and Middle Income Countries (LMICs), including Nigeria and other sub-Saharan African nations, is demonstrated by the scarcity of RT centers around the world.

Member
8
22 days ago

Occasionally, problems with electricity, machine cost, and manpower in many developing nations might hinder the adoption of modern technology.

Member
8
22 days ago

Care of cancer in Nigeria is low we need to pay more attention to it in other good treatment of cancer is performed our health care need to be more prepare to fight cancer

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