Haiti – a dream island
and nightmare for its children: cancer
Poor children in Haiti can't simply go to the doctor when they’re ill, because there is no basic health provision. If they have cancer, their chance of recovery is zero. This is why in 2003 the island’s first children’s cancer ward was opened at the NPH St. Damien Pediatric Hospital.
Olson’s father was shattered when he was told about his small son’s diagnosis: a soft tissue tumour. It is thanks to the hospital’s doctors that the little boy could be helped. Thanks also to the major commitment of the Margarete Müller-Bull Foundation in its funding of the children’s cancer ward, thus ensuring that children like Olson are given the chance to lead a good and healthy life. Girls and boys in need up to the age of 14 are also treated for free thanks to the funding. The ward staff cares for their young patients in the permanently occupied beds. In 2016 a total of 72 children were treated, not to mention many more former patients who return for check-ups. In all, St. Damien’s cancer specialists performed more than 1,100 check-ups in 2016. Another important area is the psychological counselling and support of the children and consistently raising the awareness of the general public.
The hospital staff is continuously trained to ensure a good standard of quality and earlier detection of cancer on the island.