The Sanofi Espoir Foundation and our program My Child Matters were featured at an event organized by Access Accelerated on the sidelines of the 72th United Nations General Assembly in New York on 20 September 2017. The event brought together high-level representatives from the industry, policy and public health worlds, all seeking to find common solutions to move the needle in the battle against non-communicable diseases (NCDs) in low and middle income countries.
In her opening address, Her Royal Highness Princess Dina Mired of Jordan, president-elect of the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC) said “We all are in the same world, public and private sectors and we need to join our efforts to move NCD care forwards”.
During one of the panels, the focus turned the on-the-ground experience and concrete steps to be taken to enhance collaboration between the different parts of the health care ecosystem. Professor Angelica Samudio, Head of Hematology and Oncology, Asunction’s Hospital and My Child Matters project leader in Paraguay, described the situation for children’s cancer in her country by explaining that “There is a “BEFORE” and an “AFTER” My Child Matters in Paraguay".
Focusing on her experience in childhood cancer, Professor Samudio reminded the audience that the two main causes of treatment failure in the field of pediatric oncology are the late diagnosis and the treatment drop out.
The Sanofi Espoir Foundation has been active in Paraguay since 2009. In just under ten years, we have achieved to decentralize care for children with cancer by establishing a network of satellite clinics. In addition to that, we have trained 4900 physicians and 1600 nurses and continue to provide social and emotional support to the families.
The impact is clear: the treatment abandonment rate has decreased from 20% to 0%, and the survival rate for the most frequent leukemia in our patients has doubled to reach 70%. Professor Samudio concluded by saying that “One of the most important ingredients of our success is probably the collaboration we have with the Sanofi Espoir Foundation team, the confidence they bring and their commitment to patients and their families”.