Approximately 70 percent of cancer-related deaths worldwide are in low- and middle-income countries. In Tanzania, nearly 75 percent of cancer cases are diagnosed at stages 3 and 4, and only 10 percent of cancer patients reach hospitals. Women are the most affected.
The Tanzania Comprehensive Cancer Project – implemented by the Aga Khan Health Services in collaboration with Tanzanian government hospitals – is making huge changes to reduce suffering for cancer patients.
Community health facilities are being trained to offer basic oncology care, including screening, early referral, palliative care and survivorship counselling. Hundreds of community healthcare workers are targeting groups and their communities, and mobile screening vans will soon be brought into very hard-to-reach areas of the country.
Partners who have supported the Tanzania Comprehensive Cancer Project include Agence Française de Développement (AFD), Ocean Road Cancer Institute (ORCI), Muhimbili National Hospital (MNH), Bugando Medical Centre (BMC), President’s Office Regional and Local Government (PO-RALG), Ministry of Health, Community Development, Gender, Elderly and Children (MoHCDGEC), and the Institut Curie.
World Cancer Day is held every year on 4 February to help catalyse action for a cancer-free world.