Krebsallianz in Moldova
In September Krebsallianz visited Moldova to experience the impact of their most recent donation Paclitaxel first hand.
This involved paying the Cancer Hospital in Chisinau a visit and going to children’s homes.
The home visits of children suffering from cancer gave us a chance to get closer to understanding the complexity of the problems at hand.
Moldova is the poorest country in Europe and has only one cancer hospital in the capital, Chisinau. Here we met the patients benefitting from Paclitaxel, and also others who urgently need our and your help.
Paclitaxel – a success story
In summer 2014 Krebsallianz received a generous donation of Paclitaxel from Hamburg Pharmaceutical company AqVida.
This donation was of enormous importance for the patients of the Cancer Hospital, Chisinau. Many described their previous treatment as too painful to bear, or that they suffered more than necessary.
Paclitaxel seemed to be much easier for the cancer patients to take. The side effects are comparatively less and the patients are pleased with this improvement in treatment.
Anne Croitorv was diagnosed with breast cancer nearly a decade ago. After swift and radical treatment she returned to work.
Sadly six years later in 2012, her cancer had returned to her lungs.
She was given the standard treatment by the hospital only to be met with more bad news; the cancer had spread and was very aggressive.
To fight such an aggressive cancer the doctors mixed up Anna a strong cocktail of chemotherapy.
By the end of 2013 not only was she unable to lie down to sleep, but she could not get up and walk!
The treatment was causing her so much pain, yet she had no other way to battle the cancer. This state of agony went on for 7 months.
Now, receiving Krebsallianz’s donation of Paclitaxel, she is doing much better. After the second round of chemotherapy, she was able to walk and lie down again.
No longer does she have to sleep and spend all her days sitting in an arm chair, she is more than grateful for the chance at recovery.
Whilst in Moldova we were able to visit many patients in hospital but also those who had already returned home.
In 2012 Krebsallianz in cooperation with Coram Deo helped a girl named Victoria Cergea who has been suffering from Leukemia for the past 4 years.
She has to return to Chisinau every month for treatment and she is doing much better than when we last saw her.
Her situation is a very difficult one, her father left the family to go and find work in Russia. Leaving her mother alone with three children.
Her younger sister was diagnosed with a brain tumor three years ago.
Now, 11 years old and in remission her sister is also doing much better, but sometimes has difficulty with her sight. Victoria tells us how she does her homework for her when she can see well. They have a younger brother who is fit and healthy.
The mother tells us how her kids are her only hope. The trip to Moldova helped to reveal to us the current situation that patients have to struggle with everyday.
Medicines are simply not available, even if people have enough money to buy them. Patients often have to travel to neighbouring countries and further to obtain the correct treatment.
This then has an enormous affect on friends and family of those sick. One patient explained to us that if you get ill, then all the people around them have to sacrifice so much for this one person.
The national health insurance only secures one bed in a hospital.
No more. Therefore, as the hospitals don’t have large budgets, everything that a patient needs from bed-sheets to painkillers has to be bought by the patient and their family.
Extra costs are added if one lives in a remote village, then the cost of travel for family and friends is enormous.
Others take out a loan from the bank to cover such costs. Such hardships are daily life for many patients in Moldova, those suffering from cancer and other non-communicable diseases.
Our job at Krebsallianz is to support them to the best of our abilities, as we believe nobody should suffer just because they are poor.
Help us to continue to support patients such as Victoria to give those a chance at recovery who would otherwise go untreated.