DMC celebrates Childhood Cancer Awareness Month

Apr. 06, 2009

DAVAO CITY — In commemoration of Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, Davao Medical Center (DMC) in cooperation with Kythe Foundation, instigated a campaign that is aimed for early detection and public education on childhood cancer.

According to DMC pediatric oncologist Dr. Mae Conception Dolendo, about 80-100 percent new cases of children with cancer are seen at DMC every year, This is responsible for more than 600 admissions for chemotherapy and cancer related indications in children annually.

“That’s why we are here for them because a child has a better chance of survival Kelangan silang gamutin. Mas maganda ang chance of cure ng bata,” said DMC pediatric hermatologist Dr. Grace Pecson.

Childhood cancer is a highly curable disease especially when diagnosed early, Dr. Mae Conception Dolendo said.

Childhood cancers have survival rates of 70-80 percent in countries with better resources compared to the Philippines and about 10 percent survival rates in the Philippines nationwide (International Union against Childhood Cancer). This is probably due to lack of access to care or a treatment facility and specialized care, and financial problems.

Over the past three years, the DMC has increased its success rate from 10 to 30 percent because of the of the different activities they are doing, like intensified information-education campaigns, networking with centers of excellence in childhood cancer, technology transfer teaching moments or teleconferencing to National University and St. Jude (South America, Middle East), and continuing education and training, said Dr. Mae Conception Dolendo.

Future campaigns are for providing a separate oncology unit for the children, chemotherapy drugs and other medicine, improved diagnostic capabilities and satellite facilities across Mindanao.

“We will also give children pysho social care, healing through simple sharing,” DMC Kythe Child Coordinator Ms. Sheina Payno.

DMC will be celebrating the Childhood Cancer Month this April with following various awareness activities slated for the entire month: Public Forum (April 4, 2:30pm at NCCC mall atrium), House of Hope open house and tree planting (April 17, 8:30am at DMC compound), Smash for Hope Badminton Invitational (April 25-26, Bajada, Davao City), Kite Flying with the Kids (April 29,3:00pm at Empty Lot across DMC, and Chidlhood Cancer Awareness Exhibit (April 1-30, at DMC OPCC and DMC Main Lobby).

The Davao Medical Pediatric Oncology Team, together with the Davao Children’s Cancer Fund Inc., Kythe Foundation, Lingap, PCSO, Rotary Club of Waling Waling Davao and other Rotary Clubs, individuals, GOs and NGOs, are working hand in hand to help children with cancer, particularly who are indigent cancer patients. (PIA XI)

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