Identifying the Need
The GO Cancer Education Materials project originated from early conversations with the Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital (QECH) nursing staff in Blantyre, Malawi, facilitated through the GO-QECH partnership. Nurses identified the need for culturally appropriate cancer education materials targeted at low literacy populations, in order to improve patients' understanding of their disease, and to help improve adherence. Through a small team of Global Oncology volunteers and design support from THE MEME Design, GO has been working with nurses in Malawi and Rwanda and the medical community in Boston to develop an educational booklet to meet the needs of these patient populations.
Collaboration between Global Oncology and THE MEME Design
Since September 2014, Global Oncology has been working with THE MEME Design in Cambridge, MA, who have generously offered their time and expertise to help GO develop innovative patient education materials for patient populations in low-resource settings in sub-Saharan Africa. These efforts, led by Carlos Cardenas, have been instrumental in allowing GO to pair the content developed from a network of experts in Boston, Malawi, and Rwanda, with patient-centered, culturally relevant design accessible to low literacy audiences.
Building Global Partnerships
The GO Cancer Education Materials project, from the very beginning, has collaborated closely with staff at the Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital in Blantyre, Malawi. The materials are also starting to be implemented and evaluated at other partner sites. We hope to build on our existing partnerships with these sites as well as extend the reach of this initiative to other interested collaborators.
The Road Ahead
The GO Cancer Education Materials team plans to continue its work to refine, evaluate, and broaden our efforts to provide informational materials targeted to cancer patients and families in low-resource settings. The ultimate goal of the project is to close the gaps in cancer patient education worldwide, addressing the wide differences in patient literacy levels and promoting treatment adherence by helping patients understand their disease.
The funds we raise will bring our work to partners in Rwanda, Haiti, and Guatemala in 2015. In 2016, GO will expand our reach to India, as well as add sites in Africa and South America.
Through this initiative, we hope to improve the patient experience in these countries, reduce stigma, help facilitate dialogue between patients and providers, and ensure that no patient stops treatment because they don’t understand the care process.
For more information about this project, contact Maia Olsen at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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