Pediatric Cancer Program at Tikur Anbessa Specialized Hospital
The opening of the first hospital unit in Ethiopia’s history dedicated to treating pediatric cancer.
The launch of Ethiopia’s first pediatric cancer fellowship program, designed to provide local doctors the training and tools to become qualified pediatric hematologists-oncologists through a combination of intensive specialty instruction onsite at TASH and abroad by renowned pediatric hematologist-oncologists.
The provision of extensive specialized instruction in pediatric oncology nursing, pathology, oncology pharmacy, palliative care, and data collection and management.
The provision of a bio-safety cabinet for the pediatric oncology unit as well as essential chemotherapy drugs unavailable at TASH.
Today, the TASH pediatric cancer program remains the most advanced and robust in Ethiopia, handling more than 7000 in- and out-patient visits annually and an estimated 700 new cases each year. Graduates of Aslan's fellowship program likewise serve as leaders in their field, chairing the TASH pediatric oncology department and, with Aslan's continuing mentorship, advising both the MOH and its National Pediatric Cancer Task Force as to strategies for growing the country's pediatric cancer health system.
Estimates project that Ethiopia will face as many as 6,000-8,000 new cases of pediatric cancer each year. As of 2012, however, there were no doctors, nurses, or other specialists trained to diagnose, treat, or care for children with cancer working in the country.
To address this need, Dr. Aziza Shad and Mary Louise Cohen formed a partnership among the Federal Ministry of Health (MOH), Addis Ababa University, Tikur Anbessa Specialized Hospital (TASH) in Addis Ababa, and Georgetown University Hospital in Washington, DC to develop Ethiopia's first formal pediatric cancer program.
In March 2013, our pediatric cancer program officially launched at TASH. Highlights of the achievements of this partnership include: