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J Cancer Prev. 2019 Mar;24(1):33-42. doi: 10.15430/JCP.2019.24.1.33. Epub 2019 Mar 30.

The Situation of Cancer Treatment in Ethiopia: Challenges and Opportunities.

Author information

1
Department of Reproductive Health and Health Service Management, School of Public Health, College of Health Sciences, Addis Ababa University, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
2
Department of Nursing and Midwifery, School of Allied Health Sciences, College of Health Sciences, Addis Ababa University, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
3
Department of Oncology, School of Medicine, College of Health Sciences, Addis Ababa University, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
4
Department of Preventive Medicine, School of Public Health, College of Health Sciences, Addis Ababa University, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.
5
Department of Pathology, School of Medicine, College of Health Sciences, Addis Ababa University, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.

Abstract

Background:

Less attention is given to cancer treatment and control in Ethiopia.

Methods:

To investigate the challenges and opportunities facing cancer treatment services in Ethiopia. A purposive sampling technique was applied to recruit the study subjects from Black Lion Specialized Hospital Oncology Department. A semi-structured interview guide was used to investigate challenges and opportunities in oncology service in Ethiopia. Data was transcribed and coded by two independent coders and analyzed thematically in reference to the objectives.

Results:

Fifteen professionals from four different disciplines were interviewed on opportunities and challenges facing cancer treatment in Ethiopia. Out of these respondents 3 were senior clinical oncologists while 4 individuals were senior oncology residents. The rest were 2 medical Physicists, 2 radiotherapy technologists and 4 oncology nurses. Majority (80%) of the respondents were males. We demonstrate that the challenges of cancer treatment service in Ethiopia emanate from the patients themselves, the administrating body, the professionals, and the technology limitations. In general, the result of this study was grouped under the following five themes: Customer-related challenges, provider-related challenges, facility-related challenges, technology-related challenges and the opportunities.

Conclusions:

Several assignments are waiting for the policy makers, the professionals, the communities and other concerned bodies to combat the alarmingly growing burden of cancer in Ethiopia. Escalating the awareness of the general population about cancer, expanding well-developed diagnostic and treatment centers, and producing well-trained competent oncology professionals are the forefront challenges in combating cancer in Ethiopia.

KEYWORDS:

Black Lion Specialized Hospital; Cancer; Challenges; Ethiopia; Opportunities

Conflict of interest statement

CONFLICTS OF INTEREST No potential conflicts of interest were disclosed.

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