National Health Insurance to cover prostate cancer in Ghana?

According to a report on JoyonLine.com, prostate cancer may soon be included in the list of diseases that are covered by national health insurance in Ghana.

Treatment of prostate cancer is not currently covered by the national health insurance scheme, but recent data suggest that there are about 200 cases of prostate cancer for every 100,000 men. Ghanaian National Health Insurance already covers  care for women with breast cancer and Dr. Lydia Dsane-Selby, the Director of Clinical Audit, is quoted as suggesting that an amendment could be made in an ongoing review to include prostate cancer. “If the ministry or Parliament decides that this is a major health problem for Ghanaians, they will make the necessary amendment,” she added.

Advertisements

Limited Access to Modern Treatment Options

Olapade-Olaopa and colleagues reported earlier this year that, “In Africa, most patients with CaP present with advanced disease, and surgical castration is the most common treatment option, as most modern treatment strategies for the disease are unavailable or unaffordable.”

They note that, based on a detailed literature review and direct interviews with other physicians and other health care executives, in Africa, most patients with CaP present with advanced disease, and surgical castration is the most common treatment option, as most modern treatment strategies for the disease are unavailable or unaffordable. A significant proportion of these men progress to hormone-resistant disease shortly after first-line hormonal treatment, and a majority die within 2 years. Problems that are peculiar to the African continent include poor health facilities, scarcity of expert care, high cost of treatment, lack of data, low level of awareness of the disease, absence of early detection and treatment programs, cultural limitations, and the prominence of alternative medical practice.