UN Headquarters, New York
September 28, 2018

Department of Health (DOH) Secretary Francisco Duque III led the Philippine delegation in participating in the Side Event entitled, ‘Ensuring A Right to Cure: Improving Childhood Cancer and Decreasing Global Survival Disparities,’ during the 73rd Session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) at the UN Headquarters in New York.

The Secretary delivered the country’s statement in the session that aims to launch a global initiative in order to bridge the gaps in care and cure, as well as advance outcomes for children with cancer.

In recent figures, more than 300,000 children globally aged 19 years old and younger are diagnosed with cancer every year. Of this number, about 8 in 10 children come from low and middle-income countries where their survival rate is only about 20%, in stark contrast to higher income countries where the cure rates exceed 80% for many common childhood cancers.

The session examined childhood cancer care, global survival disparities, and the strategies to address such disparities. The World Health Organization (WHO), in collaboration with global partners including the U.S.-based St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, is working to establish an initiative to catalyze global efforts in transforming childhood cancer outcomes worldwide.

The Philippines served as one of the co-sponsors of the Side Event.

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