Novartis Group division Sandoz has expanded its partnership with UK-based charity World Child Cancer to improve access to treatment, as well as optimise survival outcomes for children suffering from cancer in four developing nations.

The current deal is an extension of Sandoz’s existing collaboration with World Child Cancer in the Philippines, where the company is funding staff training needs and assisting children in accessing diagnosis and subsequent treatment.

World Child Cancer chief executive Jon Rosser said: “We are very excited at this growing partnership with Sandoz, which will enable us to prevent so many children dying without even a diagnosis and without effective pain relief.

“We believe that all children, regardless of where they live, deserve better.”

"We believe that all children, regardless of where they live, deserve better."

The pilot project has currently been expanded to include three additional countries, Ghana, Mexico and Myanmar, across three continents.

Sandoz oncology head Peter Stenico said: “These projects will take simple, pragmatic measures to attack cancer where it is most vulnerable; among children suffering from forms of cancer that are often absolutely treatable.

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“Together with World Child Cancer, we believe we can make a real difference by enhancing the standard of care for children in these countries and, ultimately, improving childhood cancer survival rates.”

Across the four countries, nearly 6,000 children suffer from cancer each year, out of which only about 20% receive a proper diagnosis, while a lesser number receive any effective treatment.