No full-time specialist

FIJI does not have a full-time oncologist and liaises with medical counterparts in Australia and New Zealand, says Colonial War Memorial Hospital’s senior medical officer surgery Dr Ronald Kumar.

Dr Kumar said each department of the hospital was responsible for looking after its respective cancer patients.

“As a surgeon, we would look after breast, intestinal, stomach, brain and limb cancers.

“The physicians would look after other cancers like lymphomas, lung cancers and the gynecologist would look after the ovarian and cervical cancers,” Dr Kumar said.

“The pediatricians would look after cancers in children.

“One of our colleagues is training overseas to be a medical oncologist and should be coming back later this year to head the oncology services.

“Currently, the Oncology Departments at CWM Hospital in Suva, Lautoka and Labasa hospitals are looked after by nurses, while patient management decisions are being made by their specific doctors.”

Dr Kumar said biopsies and operations were performed by well-trained surgeons who were trained and skilled in the specific operation details.

“The most common breast cancer types are infiltrating ductal cancer, lobular cancers and the more uncommon ones are the inflammatory cancers.

“The costs of patients’ treatment is free and that includes operation and chemotherapy treatments.”

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