“A stitch in time, saving nine” : Paediatric Oncology Nurse Training in Cameroon

Written by Madison Hamblin

One of the critical aspects of improving childhood cancer outcomes in Cameroon is ensuring that nurses have access to high-quality paediatric oncology training. Thanks to funding from Bristol Myers Squibb (BMS), World Child Cancer delivered a 2-week paediatric oncology nurse training course at Mbingo Baptist Hospital in January and February 2023 to improve knowledge and skills related to childhood cancer management among the participating nurses. 

Localised Training

Across our programme countries, we are implementing the SIOP nursing curriculum to improve the quality of childhood cancer care. At World Child Cancer, we believe in integrated and localised approaches to training. This is reflected in our paediatric oncology nurse training course, which is for the nurses, by the nurses. Our Cameroon training plan was developed by two nurse practitioners who participated in our ‘Training for Trainers’ workshop in Ghana under the supervision of Dr Glenn Mbah (Programme Coordinator, World Child Cancer Cameroon).  

The course

17 nurses were trained in the course from 5 hospitals across Cameroon (highlighted in the above map). In January and February, the 2-week in-person course was delivered. This training was multidisciplinary, with modules including childhood cancer diagnosismanagement of chemotherapy, psychological care, and outpatient and followup careamong othersThe learning method used a combination of lectures, discussions, roleplay, and handson practical sessions on the ward, with the aim of embedding knowledge through practical application. 

This holistic approach to training aims to facilitate a well-rounded system that supports both patients, families, and the nurses themselves.

 

Feedback from the attendees

Following the 2-week didactic (teacher-centred) training, the nurses returned to their respective hospitals for a 3-month supervisory period, whereby their practice was monitored and evaluated by lead nurses. In the coming months, World Child Cancer will be reviewing the impact of the training on the nurses’ competency and knowledge of childhood cancer treatment and management.  

We received some incredible feedback from our participants on the 2-week didactic course. One nurse quoted the course as a ‘stitch in time, saving nine.’ Another nurse credited the course as ‘greatly impacting how I now offer care to my patients,’ enabling her to ‘quickly identify signs of oncological emergencies.’ Overall, 88.2% of participants rated both the facilitators and the quality of handouts as good or excellent. 

A big thank you to Bristol Myers Squibb (BMS) for their incredible and impactful grant and support in creating sustainable and improved paediatric oncology nursing in Cameroon. 

Uttam’s Story

Meet Uttam – just one of the 662 children as part of our ‘Closing the Cancer Gap’ appeal, including matched funding from the UK Government. 

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Alile’s Story

Discover Alile’s journey through cancer as recounted by her mother, from the initial symptoms to diagnosis and treatment.

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Naa’s Story

We first met Naa in 2016 when she was diagnosed with Wilm’s Tumour at 7 years old. In 2021 the cancer returned and Naa underwent treatment again. She has battled cancer twice and is now back in school.

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Joseph’s update

We first met Joseph in 2019 after he was diagnosed with Leukaemia. Find out more how he is doing after his successful treatment.

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Kayin’s story

Kayin was diagnosed with Burkitt’s Lymphoma. He is now working as a carpenter and is feeling happy and strong.

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Rebecca’s Update

Read more about our catch-up with Rebecca after undergoing cancer treatment through World Child Cancer in Ghana six years ago.

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Discover More Stories…

Uttam’s Story

Meet Uttam – just one of the 662 children as part of our ‘Closing the Cancer Gap’ appeal, including matched funding from the UK Government. 

Read more

Alile’s Story

Discover Alile’s journey through cancer as recounted by her mother, from the initial symptoms to diagnosis and treatment.

Read more

Naa’s Story

We first met Naa in 2016 when she was diagnosed with Wilm’s Tumour at 7 years old. In 2021 the cancer returned and Naa underwent treatment again. She has battled cancer twice and is now back in school.

Read more

Joseph’s update

We first met Joseph in 2019 after he was diagnosed with Leukaemia. Find out more how he is doing after his successful treatment.

Read more

Kayin’s story

Kayin was diagnosed with Burkitt’s Lymphoma. He is now working as a carpenter and is feeling happy and strong.

Read more

Rebecca’s Update

Read more about our catch-up with Rebecca after undergoing cancer treatment through World Child Cancer in Ghana six years ago.

Read more

Hassan’s story

14-year-old Hassan from the Machinga district of Malawi was diagnosed with Acute lymphoblastic leukaemia (ALL) last year.

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Tiwo’s story

Five years after developing cancer and two years of treatment later, six-year-old Tiwo is doing well

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Franklyn’s Story

Meet Franklyn, now 17, who is fully recovered from cancer and dreams of becoming a doctor to help others

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Rebecca’s Success Story

Rebecca is now able to return to school after undergoing cancer treatment through World Child Cancer in Ghana

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My road to recovery

Prince went on to become a childhood cancer advocate and help many other children just like him when he recovered from leukaemia. Read More

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Estaphanie is excited to start university!

Meet Estaphanie, who is excited to start university after being forced to take time out of school following a cancer diagnosis

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Meet Bulu

Bulu is looking forward to following in his brother’s footsteps getting back on the football field

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Meet Oscar

Oscar was six years old when his mother noticed a swelling on his tummy and took him to a traditional village doctor

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Together we can close the gap in childhood cancer care.

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