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City Cancer Challenge organises webinar to share experiences on cancer care and COVID-19 in Latin America

July 20, 2020

City Cancer Challenge organises webinar to share experiences on cancer care and COVID-19 in Latin America

  • City Cancer Challenge (C/Can) brings together the heads of the National Cancer Institutes of Brazil, Mexico, Paraguay and Colombia.
  • Webinar will take place on 29 July at 6 pm Mexico City local time. The registration form, as well as all information related to the meeting, can be accessed through this page.

On July 29th, the City Cancer Challenge Foundation (C/Can) and the Mexican Association of Pharmaceutical Research Industries (AMIIF) will hold a digital meeting with the heads of the National Cancer Institutes of Brazil, Mexico, Paraguay and Colombia to address the problem of cancer during the current situation. 

The webinar will be open to questions from the public via chat, after registering

The purpose of this initiative is to increase inter-institutional knowledge about the innovative solutions that have been implemented, strengthen collaboration between cancer centers and to share, at the regional level, the various ways in which cancer care is being provided in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic. 

The online session will address the challenges, opportunities and experiences in providing cancer care services in Latin America.  Best practices and alternatives related to budget allocation, treatment prioritization and infrastructure modifications, among others, will be shared.

The webinar will be moderated by the regional director of City Cancer Challenge for Latin America, Dr María Fernanda Navarro.

“This meeting is an opportunity to continue advancing toward the common goal of cancer control during this critical situation and in the near future,” says Dr Navarro. She adds that the meeting will mainly discuss the lessons learned from the pandemic’s impact on cancer care centres and increase cooperation among cancer specialists in Latin America. 

Cristobal Thompson, Executive Director of AMIIF, says “It was clear from the beginning of the pandemic  that the focus needed to be on research and development of vaccines and treatments for Covid-19, but in no way should we lose focus on people living with cancer. This meeting, virtual and regional, will reveal the challenges that have been faced and the best practices to overcome them. It is an opportunity to learn about the impact on people living with cancer and to act as soon as possible.”

COVID-19 in Latin America

 COVID-19 has transformed overnight the way institutions work with people suffering from chronic non-communicable diseases, which has proved particularly difficult for cancer patients. In Latin America, important changes have been developed  with new criteria and protocols of care, budget re-allocation, prioritization of treatments, modifications in infrastructure, among others. 

Several problems have been identified that undermine the preparedness of Latin American countries to deal with the spread of COVID-19. On 25 February, 2020, Brazil was the first country in the region to report the disease. Within weeks, countries across the continent had closed their borders and imposed lockdowns. In recent weeks, Latin America has become the region where the epidemic is most active, with more than 3.1 million cases reported (10 July, 2020). The speed with which this pandemic is spreading is faster than the capacity to process the information to plan and develop new containment and response strategies. Each country and each health institution has been faced with the need to develop solutions and propose alternatives for cancer care in a rapid manner that modifies established paradigms and presents new challenges.