Gold September is an annual campaign worldwide to raise awareness of childhood cancer. There are many advances in pediatric oncology, yet cancer remains a leading cause of mortality in children. It is imperative that children are diagnosed early for effective treatment of early-stage disease, which will translate into favourable outcomes and improved overall survival. Many factors are responsible for delays in childhood cancer, including the child’s age, family’s socioeconomic status, parental educational level, distance of residence from the hospital, cancer type, site, and stage.
Many children in low- and middle-income countries have poor access to hospitals, which in turn lack essential diagnostic tests, experience a shortage of nursing medical and surgical personnel, inadequate and erratic supply of basic pharmaceutical and chemotherapeutic agents, and an absence of radiotherapy, surgical and intensive care facilities. These are but some of the factors which contribute to patients presenting with advanced disease and resultant poorer outcomes.
As neonatal, infant and child health improves in South Africa, communicable diseases, such as respiratory and diarrhoeal diseases, HIV-AIDS, and tuberculosis, are better controlled. It is imperative to focus on non-communicable diseases such as childhood cancer and identify these diseases early, have access to the correct diagnostics and therapeutics and ensure the availability of supportive care to improve overall survival of our children with cancer.
The burden of the SARS-CoV-2 is further testing our fragile African health care systems. Many caregivers are unemployed due to national lockdowns, there are inadequate transport systems, and caregivers are afraid to venture out of the safety of their homes to seek healthcare as the ever-present danger of contracting Covid-19 lurks. Sadly, we may experience even further delays in the diagnosis of childhood cancer.
We should endeavour to ensure children with cancer do not face further delays in the diagnosis and treatment of cancer during the global SARS-CoV-2 pandemic.
The Siluan Warning Signs for childhood cancer were adopted by the South African Children’s Cancer Study Group and the national Department of Health to promote the early detection and we encourage the community to be a voice of hope this September and collaborate with health care workers, non-profit organisations, and the Department of Health to spread the Siluan Warning Signs for early cancer diagnosis. This could possibly save the life of a child or teenager.
If you are concerned your child may have cancer, please refer your child or teenager here: https://choc.org.za/choc-patient-referral-pathways/
Professor Gita Naidu
Chair: South African Children’s Cancer Study Group
Director, Non-Communicable Diseases National Department of Health
Chief Executive Officer
CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation South Africa
For Media Queries – contact Hedley Lewis – 0829947655 – [email protected]
Have you felt that extreme satisfaction when your ball lands in the hole, on the 9th or 18th hole? Well, if you participate in the 2021 CHOC Challenge Virtual Golf Days the feeling is even greater as you will be assisting to make sure that children and their families who are affected by cancer are supported throughout their journey.
When you are battling out on the greens across Gauteng you are battling out for those children who need our support.
Nagm Azar, CHOC Chairman comments, “For children and families facing cancer, the COVID 19 pandemic has made the challenges of their diagnosis all the more daunting. CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation South Africa wants to help these families, so that they do not face this fight alone.
There is no better time than September which is Cancer Awareness Month, an important time to spread awareness and information on childhood cancer. Chip in during the month of September and take part in one of several virtual golf days that CHOC are hosting in partnership with the Central Gauteng Golf Association.
Andy Trulock, Manager of the Central Gauteng Golf Association notes “ we are excited to partner with CHOC an NGO which augments the multidisciplined interventions within the various hospitals for patients with Cancer. “
The 2021 CHOC Challenge Virtual Golf Days will be held throughout the month of September. We encourage golf clubs to host a CHOC Challenge on one of their competition days in an effort to support our Foundation. All members are welcome to participate and are encouraged to bring visitors to join in on the day.
The format of the virtual golf days will be Individual Stableford, with prizes up for grabs for the top performers. We waiting with baited breath to see who will be the champion, however at the end of the day the true winners are the patients. Everyone who enters, will get an automatic entry into the CGGU CHOC raffle, where exciting prizes are up for grabs.
Don’t think twice CHIP in! Grab a four-ball and join us in our 2021 virtual golf day.
For media queries or assistance with booking contact Taryn [email protected] or 072 243 5179
Or visit www.choc.org.za or the Central Gauteng Golf Association website.
The CHOC Childhood Cancer Foundation SA has continued to augment the pediatric oncology fraternity to support patients to receive treatment throughout the SARS-Coronavirus-2 pandemic.
“If you are receiving treatment for cancer or have signs and symptoms of cancer, please do not delay in going to the hospital. Hospitals and clinics have contingency plans to assist all patients, and infection prevention measures to prevent the spread of SARS-Coronavirus-2” says Professor Gita Naidu, and omit second doctor (President of the South African Children’s Study Cancer Group -SACCSG).
At CHOC we recommend that despite the SARS-Coronavirus-2 pandemic which is still evolving globally and remains a public health emergency of international concern, do not avoid getting checked or delay your treatment, an early diagnosis can better the survival rate.
Hedley Lewis – CHOC’s CEO communicates that “our foundation continues to avail ourselves to members of the public who may detect any of the early warning signs of childhood cancer in a child or teenager, please contact the CHOC helpline – 0800 333 555 (during office hours) or visit our website to get in touch with the region closest to you: www.choc.org.za”
To view the CHOC Early Warning Signs please click here: https://choc.org.za/childhood-cancer-early-warning-signs/
For further media queries please contact:
+27 72 243 5179
CHOC is a non-profit organisation that advocates for the health and well-being of children and teenagers diagnosed with cancer or life-threatening blood disorders. The passionate and dedicated staff and volunteers of CHOC aim to save lives through early detection and comprehensive support programmes for the families affected by cancer such as; accommodation, transport assistance, psychosocial, emotional and practical support and more. They also provide awareness and education on childhood cancer and life-threatening blood disorders.