Takeda Healthcare Philippines Inc. (“Takeda Philippines”) recently partnered with Cancer Warriors Foundation Inc., a patient support organization for families of children with childhood cancer, strengthening calls for wider access to cancer care in rural and peri-urban communities in the country.
Through this partnership, Takeda will provide a grant with the goal of supporting the group’s efforts in localizing the National Integrated Cancer Control Act (NICCA) through the establishment of InterlocalHealth Zones, which are systemized zones made up of different local health facilities, dedicated to cancer care.
NICAA was signed into law in 2019, with the aim to ensure improved access, better quality care, and in the process, increased survivorship of cancer patients. The act also seeks to reduce the financial burden experienced by cancer patients and their families.
The challenge continues
Cancer continues to be one of the leading causes of mortality in the Philippines. With the rising number of cancer cases, access to care continues to be a challenge for several Filipinos, particularly for those residing in rural and peri-urban communities. Access to cancer information, services, support providers, and even clinical trials have been very limited. Given this, patients in these areas often present with advanced or late-stage cancers, and a significant number may go undiagnosed and unseen by medical practitioners.
To improve cancer care, increase curability, and create healthier communities, it is crucial to establish alliances across stakeholders and sectors. These collaborations will be instrumental in addressing the current gaps in cancer care delivery.
“NICCA not only focuses on basic integrated care, but also holistic care. Care should go beyond just the medical aspect, but also to the psychosocial aspect as well, including patients who survive cancer. Hence, it is crucial to form alliances with LGUs and other sectors to underline the importance of NICCA’s integrated and holistic approach to cancer care,” shared Carmen “Menchie” Auste, Chief Executive Officer of Cancer Warriors Foundation Inc.
A uniting voice for localizing NICAA
Takeda has been a longstanding advocate of broadening access to medicines and supporting the Philippine government in strengthening the healthcare system. Through partnerships with non-profit organizations, patient groups, and key entities, Takeda engages in disease-awareness campaigns, policy advocacy, and advocacy network building, among other initiatives.
“Takeda looks forward to collaborating with Cancer Warriors Foundation in ensuring that NICCA becomes fully realized, which will help provide access to healthcare for cancer patients, their carers, and the general public, beginning with the establishment of Interlocal Health Zones,” Takeda Philippines Country Manager Loreann Villanueva shared.
The Cancer Warriors Foundation Inc., a non-profit organization dedicated to uniting parents against pediatric cancer, has long sustained calls for making cancer care accessible especially to patients and their families who take care and look after them.
“We hope that this partnership will zero-in on the implementation of the interlocal health zone, which will be a model of a how a primary health care system can be strengthened all the way up to the district level, essentially localizing the goal of NICAA to improve nationwide cancer healthcare,” Carmen “Menchie” Auste added. The first Interlocal Health Zone will be in CALABARZON Region, which the group sees as one of the priority regions for cancer care.
Takeda Healthcare Philippines is a wholly owned subsidiary of Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited, a global R&D-driven biopharmaceutical company.
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Takeda is focused on creating better health for people and a brighter future for the world. We aim to discover and deliver life-transforming treatments in our core therapeutic and business areas, including gastrointestinal and inflammation, rare diseases, plasma-derived therapies, oncology, neuroscience and vaccines. Together with our partners, we aim to improve the patient experience and advance a new frontier of treatment options through our dynamic and diverse pipeline. As a leading values-based, R&D-driven biopharmaceutical company headquartered in Japan, we are guided by our commitment to patients, our people and the planet. Our employees in approximately 80 countries and regions are driven by our purpose and are grounded in the values that have defined us for more than two centuries.
Takeda Healthcare Philippines, Inc. (THPI) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited. Founded in 1968, THPI aims to broaden patient access to treatment across the country through sustainable access programs enabling affordable and integrated access solutions for disease areas such as oncology, gastroenterology, rare diseases & vaccines and by strengthening the healthcare system guided by our commitment to Patients, our People and the Planet.
For more information, visit https://www.takeda.com.
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