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    Hundreds of Ukrainian child cancer patients transferred to Poland

    Nearly 900 Ukrainian child cancer patients have come to Poland to continue their treatment in the country or be transferred abroad since the start of the war in Ukraine.

    A further 17 children arrived in Poland on Wednesday evening.

    Prof. Anna Raciborska, director of the Institute of Mother and Child Oncology and Oncological Surgery Clinic in Warsaw, told PAP the transfer of patients had taken place thanks to an initiative by the US-based St. Jude Global organisation, which was involved in increasing the availability of oncological treatment in Eastern European countries even before the war broke out in Ukraine.

    “At the moment of the war’s outbreak in Ukraine, I received a phone call from the people coordinating this programme from St. Jude Global asking what could be done to help children sick with tumours in Ukraine,” she said. “Within a few days Prof. Wojciech Mlynarski, on behalf of the Polish Association of Paediatric Oncology and Haematology, agreed to coordinate the whole programme from the Polish side.”

    Prof. Raciborska went on to say that within a week, with the aid of the St. Jude Global Alliance, professional help was organised in transferring Ukrainian children to Poland.

    She said Ukrainian children with tumours or blood diseases were first admitted temporarily to the Marian Wilemski Unicorn Clinic near the central city of Kielce, for initial assessment, from where they were forwarded to other treatment centres worldwide, including in the USA, Canada, South America and Israel as well as across Europe. 

    Currently, about 200 children are being treated in Poland and 130 in Germany, she told PAP.

    “Every Polish child oncology centre has children from Ukraine under their care,” Prof. Raciborska said, adding that the situation in Ukraine meant that they could not continue treatment there, which for many would have meant death.

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