May 12, 2021

Cayman Islands awaits Caribbean cancer registry hub

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The Cayman Islands Cancer Registry is eagerly anticipating the implementation of an operational cancer registry hub set to be housed at the Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) headquarters in Port-of-Spain Trinidad and Tobago.

As a part of a collaboration with several international health organizations the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) will lead the initiative to develop and implement the Caribbean Cancer Registry Hub. This hub is one of the six regional hubs intended to address the lack of high-quality cancer data in certain geographic regions, provide technical expertise, advocacy assistance and support to countries around the world and their cancer registries.

“It is well established that high quality population-based cancer registration is pivotal to cancer prevention and control. Cancer registration is limited in the English and Dutch speaking Caribbean. As a consequence, there is a paucity of national and regional information on the current and future burden of cancer. Evidence-based decision-making for cancer prevention and control is also lacking,” says CARPHA.

The Caribbean Cancer Registry Hub aims to strengthen cancer surveillance by building capacity for cancer registration in the region through technical support, training, networking opportunities and collaborative research.

“Once implemented this hub could provide the Cayman Islands Cancer Registry with the opportunity to work with some of the top health organizations in the world and receive support and training from the very best in the field,” said Amanda Nicholson, Cayman Islands Cancer Registrar.

“The IARC Caribbean Hub will fill a critical gap by serving as a reference centre of expertise, directly supporting countries in the region to strengthen cancer data. This is especially important as such information is the basis for effective prevention, treatment and supportive care programmes. Together with partners, we are creating local capacity that will ultimately help to reduce the burden of cancer in the Caribbean,” said Les Mery, IARC, Lyon, France.

Along with the Caribbean Cancer Registry Hub, the regional hub supporting countries in the Pacific Islands is still being implemented while those for South, East, and South-Eastern Asia; Sub-Saharan Africa; North Africa, Central and West Asia; and Latin America have already been established.
The IARC will be joined in the development of these hubs by other Global Initiative for Cancer Registration Development (GICR) partners including the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the US National Cancer Institute (NCI) and the North American Association of Central Cancer Registries (NAACCR).

In an effort to further promote and develop Cayman’s cancer registry Ms Nicholson will be making a presentation on the Cayman Islands Cancer Registry; showing the relationship between it and the health of Cayman’s population at the educational forum: “Advancements in Genetics, Genomics & Cancer Management” on 9 March at the Westin, Grand Cayman. The forum will feature the most relevant updates in the ever-expanding fields of genetics and genomics and is designed to foster dialogue between health care providers to develop strategies that contribute to better care for patients.

If a cancer survivor wishes to register to the Cayman Islands Cancer Registry they may contact Ms Nicholson at 244-2560 or [email protected] Registering is fast, easy, and only takes a couple of minutes. It can be done face to face or via e-mail.

Visit www.hsa.ky for more information and services offered at the Cayman Islands Health Services Authority.

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