Treating Cancer in Botswana

Cancer is a global killer that claims 7.6 million lives each year. While much of the attention on cancer is local, the burden of cancer rests in the developing world. According to the WHO, an estimated 70% of cancer deaths take place in low and middle income countries. Furthermore, the WHO also says that 30% of cancer deaths can be prevented. With the majority of deaths taking place in resource-strapped countries, it is also where the majority of improvement can take place.

Rutgers University researcher Julie Livingston will soon publish a book on Princess Marina Hospital, home to the only dedicated oncology ward in Botswana. The main character of the story is a German oncologist, but Livingston says in her preface that the focal point is cancer itself. Cancer is an equal opportunity killer. The story is about the development of oncology in the wake of Botswana’s development.

The good news is that the publisher, Duke University Press, has made a preview of the book available online. Below you can read through the first chapter. Take a look: