February 1, 2022

Australian Radiation Oncologists Address Inequality in Accessing Radiation Therapy

Dr Yap (fifth from the right) in Combodia.

In the midst of a pandemic, a polluted planet, and increasing diseases like cancer, asthma and heart disease, WHO will focus global attention this World Health Day 2022 on urgent actions needed to keep humans and the planet healthy and foster a movement to create societies focused on well-being.

Australian radiation oncologists recognise the inequality in accessing radiation therapy in underprivileged countries such as Africa and Papua New Guinea, with their on-going effort to close the care gap for the health and well-being of people with cancer.

“26 out of the 54 countries in the African continent have no radiation therapy available. It is a bleak situation there because people diagnosed with cancer are unable to access radiation therapy. In Papua New Guinea with a population of nearly 9 million, there is no working machine available to deliver radiation therapy at all,” Dr Mei Ling Yap said.

Dr Mei Ling Yap co-chairs the Asia-Pacific Radiation Oncology Special Interest Group (ASPROSIG) at The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Radiologists (RANZCR). The group develops partnerships with radiation departments in low-and medium-income countries in the Asia-Pacific region to support the training of their radiation oncology trainees.

On this World Health Day, we would like to highlight the Australian radiation oncologists’ work and actions to address the inequality abroad. Join the Targeting Cancer Campaign and help us spread the message!

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