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Type E – Prof Jeannette Parkes – Paediatric Radiation Oncology in Low & Middle Income Countries

A travel grant was awarded to Prof Jeannette Parkes from Groote Schuur Hospital to attend the 49th Congress of the International Society of Paediatric Oncology (SIOP) in Washington from 12th to 15th October 2017.

The major areas of study and how the visit have contributed to the understanding and/or management of cancer

The International Society of Paediatric Oncology (SIOP) is the only global multidisciplinary society entirely devoted to paediatric and adolescent cancer. It has over 1000 members worldwide including doctors, nurses, other health-care professionals, scientists and researchers.

One of the critical sub-committees of SIOP is devoted to paediatric oncology in low and middle income countries (PODC). This sub-committee, chaired by Prof Alan Davidson from Red Cross Children’s Hospital, has an association with the international Paediatric Radiation Oncology Society (PROS)’s low and middle income group (LMIC) which I co-chair. PROS LMIC is a working group under the SIOP PODC umbrella and has the agenda of:

  • Improving Paediatric radiotherapy practice in low and middle income countries (LMIC)
  • Co-ordinating teaching and training of Paediatric radiotherapy in LMIC
  • Providing advocacy support for radiation Oncology professionals working in LMIC

The SIOP meeting is a critical meeting point for both SIOP PODC and PROS (LMIC). At this meeting I was co-organiser and speaker in a symposium:


Arranging and co-chairing a symposium makes our centre visible and helps with advocacy for our specialty in South Africa and Africa.

In addition to the symposium, SIOP annually is where the different working groups of SIOP PODC meet to discuss objectives and projects for the upcoming period.

We (Prof Alan Davidson and I) are currently involved in adapted treatment protocol development for the PODC (Paediatric Oncology for developing countries) protocols through SIOP/PROS. Good quality radiotherapy is critical in order to avoid side effects in survivors of children’s cancers.

The experience in this group has led to invitations to write chapters in 3 textbooks which are currently in press:

1. Parkes, J
Book chapter co-author: (In press) 2017
Book title: Pediatric radiation Oncology(Springer)
Editors: Merchant, T and Kortmann, R
ISBN 978-3-319-43545-9
i. Rare Pediatric solid tumors(with Jeffrey Buchsbaum)
ii.Pediatric radiotherapy in low and middle income countries(With Natia Eshiasvilli)

2. Parkes, J
Book chapter co-author: Global challenges in neuro-oncology(With Simon Bailey)
Book title: Brain tumors in children (Springer) IN PRESS 2017
ISBN 978-3-319-43205-2
Editors: Gajjar,A, Reaman, G, Racadio, J, Smith F

3. Parkes, J
Book chapter co-author update: (In press) 2017
Textbook: Oxford Specialist handbook of Haematology and Oncology update.
Chapter: Central Nervous System tumours

In addition, the PODC group has undertaken several treatment guidelines and adapted treatment regimens that I have been involved with from a radiotherapy standpoint. 1 was published in 2015, and 2 have just been accepted for publication in the December supplement of PBC:

1. Parkes J, Hendricks M, SSenyonga P, Mugamba J, Molyneux EM , Schouten-van Meeteren AYN, Qaddoumi I, Fieggen G, Luna -Fineman S, Howard S.C, Bouffet E, Davidson A and Bailey S.

SIOP PODC adapted treatment regimen: Recommendations for standard risk medulloblastoma in low and middle income settings. Pediatr Blood Cancer 2015;62:553–564

2. Laila Hessissen*, Jeannette Parkes*, Nisreen Amayiri*, Naureen Mushtaq*, Nongnuch Sirachainan*, Yavuz Anacak, Dipayan Mitra, Anthony Figaji, Antoinette Schouten-van Meeteren, Michael Sullivan, Alan Davidson, Hester Burger, Eric Bouffet**, Simon Bailey**
SIOP PODC Adapted Treatment Guidelines for Low Grade Gliomas in Low and Middle Income Settings.
Pediatr Blood Cancer 2017; Dec supplement (In press)

3. Jeannette Parkes, Clayton Hess, Hester Burger, Yavuz Anacak, Verity Ahern, Scott C. Howard, Moawia Elhassan, Soha Ahmed, Mithra Ghalibafian, Ahmed Nadeem Abbasi, Bilal Mazhar Qureshi, Mohamed Zhagloul, Eduardo Zubizarreta, Pierre Bey, Alan Davidson, Eric Bouffet, Natia Esiashvili

Recommendations for the Treatment of Children with Radiotherapy in Low and Middle Income Countries (LMIC)(A Position Paper from the PROS-LMIC (Pediatric Radiation Oncology Society), PODC (Pediatric Oncology in Developing Countries) Working Group of the International Society of Pediatric Oncology (SIOP) Pediatr Blood Cancer 2017; Dec supplement (In press)

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