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We are supporting the development of satellite centres on the island of Mindanao, with the aim of ensuring children can better access cancer care and that healthcare teams in the centres will be trained in appropriate referral pathways.


trained paediatric oncologists working in Mindanao


of childhood cancer cases diagnosed, of the 1,500 expected each year in Mindanao

Programme Information


South Philippines Medical Center


Dr Mae Dolendo


National University Hospital Singapore & St Jude Children’s Research Hospital, USA


Piera Freccero – Director of Programmes

Start Date

November 2014


Around 1,500 cases of childhood cancer are expected in Mindanao annually but only around 30% of these cases are diagnosed. We have been supporting the work led by Dr Mae Dolendo since 2009 and over the initial 5 years of the programme contributed to strengthening of services provided at SPMC in Davao.

This next stage of development focuses on building the capacity of centres around the island to diagnose and treat children. Mindanao is a culturally rich and economically challenged area and travel across the island is too expensive for most people. Accessibility issues are addressed through the development of shared care centres around the island, making it easier for patients to receive diagnosis and treatment closer to their homes.

Key Activities

  • Assess and maintain satellite centres in the Mindanao Paediatric Cancer Care Network
  • Provide training for staff at satellites to build their capacity in providing quality treatment and care
  • Develop a referral system to ensure children are tracked within the network
  • Evaluate and improve data collection systems Support the local parent group in raising money for families
  • Establish a model of shared care for children with cancer
  • Provide key staff posts at satellite centre units


  • Lack of awareness of the symptoms and curability of childhood cancer
  • Late diagnosis and under diagnosis
  • High rates of abandonment
  • Poor accessibility as over 80% of patients live too far away to afford travel
  • Lack of access to a reliable supply of affordable drugs
  • No reliable childhood cancer database
Will you join us?

Together we can close the gap in childhood cancer care.


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