Biopharmaceutical leader Takeda Healthcare Philippines Inc. has forged a partnership with Cancer Care Registry and Research Philippines Foundation (CARE PH) to expand cancer research efforts with the ambition to provide a comprehensive range of support for Filipino cancer patients.
CARE PH is a nongovernment organization founded by Dr. Beatrice Tiangco in 2017 in response to the Department of Health’s (DOH) initiative to establish a unified registry system in the country for non-communicable diseases such as cancer, stroke, diabetes, and heart disease. One of their main goals is to create and populate a hospital-based cancer registry to supplement existing population-based registries in Rizal and Metro Manila.
Through this partnership, Takeda will provide CARE PH a grant of P1 million with the goal of supporting the organization’s mission of “every preventable cancer averted, every screen-able cancer detected, and every cancer patient counted.”
“This partnership with CARE PH ensures that we improve diagnostic rates for blood cancers such as myeloma, leukemia, and lymphoma, as well as other cancers, to increase the chances of prevention and cure in the Philippines. This will help Filipino cancer patients gain accelerated access to life-changing treatments,” shared Igor Gomes, Takeda’s Cluster Head and General Manager for Vietnam, Malaysia, Philippines and Singapore (VMAPS).
Together for better oncology research and care
According to the DOH, non-communicable diseases are the top causes of death worldwide. In the Philippines, cancer affects 189 out of every 100,000 Filipinos, with four Filipinos dying of cancer every hour or 96 cancer patients every day. As such, cancer ranks 4th as the leading cause of death in the Philippines with 48,937 recorded cases from January to October 2021 as stated by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA).
Further, based on the research by the Global Cancer Observatory (Globocan), over 4,000 new patients were diagnosed with lymphoma, making it one of the top 30 cancers in the country. Approximately 300,000 deaths from this disease were recorded in 2020 alone, 2,500 of which occurred in the Philippines.
“We appreciate the liberty that Takeda has given to us in terms of how we can further improve our operations—from recruiting volunteers, hospitals, and towards initiating more cancer-related studies. Our main focus in this initiative are the Filipino cancer patients. We want to be able to provide them with registry and research outputs on the epidemiology of cancer in the country, which in turn will help prioritize screening, prevention and therapeutic initiatives, on the road to better healthcare for the Filipino cancer patient,” said Dr. Beatrice Tiangco, Medical Oncologist/Epidemiologist and Founder of CARE PH.
With a standardized and consolidated hospital registry, more robust data can be gathered, more scientific research using local data can be published, and constructing evidence-based clinical practice guidelines will be facilitated.
The Takeda grant will also allow CARE PH to donate computers to be able to train more data encoders at various hospitals throughout the country, and spearhead additional site-specific cancer registries and studies, maybe even contribute to the research and development of newer therapeutic agents for the nation’s common cancers.
“This partnership with CARE PH is something that we are very enthusiastic about since we share the same value and commitment towards bringing better health and brighter future to cancer patients,” shared Loreann Villanueva, Country Manager, Takeda Healthcare Philippines Inc.