Rwanda needs a cancer centre in every district

Editor,I would have no objection with setting up a cancer hospital because as Paul Farmer puts it, all people in rural and urban areas have equal chances to get cancer. My biggest question is: Has the cancer centre in Butaro got all it needs?
Dr Paul Farmer, Partners in Health founder and Global Health Equity advocate. The New Times/T. Kisambira.
Dr Paul Farmer, Partners in Health founder and Global Health Equity advocate. The New Times/T. Kisambira.

Editor,

I would have no objection with setting up a cancer hospital because as Paul Farmer puts it, all people in rural and urban areas have equal chances to get cancer. My biggest question is: Has the cancer centre in Butaro got all it needs?

Having the experience of hospitals here in India, it calls for more than what there is in Butaro to diagnose and treat cancer (CT/PET Scan, MRI, Chemotherapy administering, radiotherapy units, etc). Is there a mechanism to initiate partnerships with some of the best hospitals here in India with Butaro Cancer Centre?

It would help in terms of required expertise and equipment required for cancer treatment.

Hope Keza
, New Delhi, India

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BUTARO CANCER Centre is a drop in the ocean, but so much appreciated. My wish and prayer is that we get one of these in each region. Like Dr Paul Farmer said cancer attacks without discrimination. The rich get treatment in the city and abroad while the poor, many of whom get diagnosed in later stages of the disease, have nowhere to go. So many thanks to PIH and hopefully we shall get other centres opened in the near future.

Eva Gara, Kigali, Rwanda

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DR FARMER says that there are many of cancer cases in rural areas. While it’s true, they are not all in Butaro. A cancer centre of excellence should be located in a place that is convenient to most Rwandans, which is CHUK or another hospital on a main road.

It is very expensive for patients and their families to get to/from Butaro. I just wish the resources that went into enhancing the services in Butaro had gone to a more central place. Easier for poor people to reach.

Anna, Kigali, Rwanda

Reactions to the story, “Dr Paul Farmer speaks out on Butaro cancer centre”, (The New Times, July 15)

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