Is Africa once again the forgotten continent of global public health response? We fear it is. How else can one explain how international organizations, donors, much of civil society and African governments themselves, are by and large either unaware or ignoring the rise of Cancer in Africa? How is it possible that still today, over half of Africa’s countries do not have radiotherapy equipment? Why is it that another half of the continent considers opioids to be worthy of a legal ban, believing that medical morphine is a path to national addiction when data shows that it clearly is not?
For two years, iPRI has researched and documented Africa’s cancer problem in-depth. Its resulting output is a report, entitled The State of Oncology in Africa 2015 and a full length documentary film Cancer is… Attacking Africa. Both come to the same clear conclusions: Cancer in Africa is a clear and present danger. The good news, as is often the case, is that something can be done, but unity and expediency are required.
In its 2017 World Cancer Day video, Professor Peter Boyle, the Report’s Editor in Chief and the Co-Producer of the film, as well as Dr. Otis Brawley, Chief Medical Officer of the American Cancer Society and Senior Editor of the Report, both emphacise this urgency. We hope that the call to action of two such eminent scientists and policy experts will help to create some momentum.