Next Tuesday, October 26, the Chamber of Deputies will meet to discuss a set of bills, among which the oncopediatrics bill stands out. With the agreement of the ruling party and the opposition, the legislators decided to include the bill which establishes the 100% coverage of prevention, promotion, diagnosis, therapeutic practices and all the technologies related to oncological diagnosis for children and adolescents with cancer. It is expected that the initiative will be studied, one day before the session, in a plenary of committees, since it only received the approval of the Health Committee and its study by the other competent committees (Families and Budget) is still pending.
The bill proposes the creation of a comprehensive protection regime for children and adolescents suffering from cancer and permanently residing in the country. Through the creation of a National Program of Integral Care, the Argentine Hospital Oncopediatric Registry (ROHA in Spanish) of patients up to 18 years of age will be set up and training will be provided to optimize early diagnosis of childhood cancer. It also recognizes the right of children and adolescents suffering from cancer to receive the best care available -prioritizing outpatient treatment-; to receive information about their disease and treatment; to refuse experimental drugs and treatments; to receive pain treatment and palliative care, among others.
In addition, the initiative establishes that the National Cancer Institute, under the Ministry of Health, will have the following functions: to increase the coverage of the network that constitutes the ROHA; to develop a patient follow-up and treatment system; to promote the creation of a national network of HIstocompatibility Laboratories; to establish a strategic information system; to encourage epidemiological research and to promote the application of practical therapeutic guides and/or protocols.