GIS - 11 October, 2013: Professor David Khayat, Professor of Oncology of Pierre and Marie Curie University and Head of the Department of Medical Oncology of the Groupe Hospitalier Pitié-Salpêtrière, Paris, France, is on an official visit to Mauritius from 11 to 13 October 2013.
He paid a courtesy call this afternoon on the Prime Minister, Dr Navinchandra Ramgoolam, GCSK, FRCP, at the Treasury Building in Port Louis. Professor Khayat was accompanied by the Minister of Health and Quality of Life, Mr Lormus Bundhoo. During his stay, the eminent professor will carry out an assessment of the situation of cancer in Mauritius and make recommendations with a view to upgrading cancer care.
Speaking about the interaction he had with the Prime Minister, Professor Khayat said that he had a long and fulfilling discussion as regards the problem of cancer in Mauritius. He recalled that cancer is presently the third cause of mortality in the country and that it is likely to be the first cause of mortality in the next 15 years.
Prof. Khayat said that Dr Ramgoolam spoke about the setting up of a National Cancer Agency under the Trust Fund for Specialised Medical Care, a project developed as a personal initiative of the Prime Minister. It is important that patients benefit from timely detection, accurate diagnosis and updated information as regards treatment available in hospitals, the private sector and abroad, he said.
For his part, Mr Lormus Bundhoo spoke about the National Cancer Agency which will carry out a situational analysis on cancer care in Mauritius and formulate a Roadmap of cancer care bearing in mind the specificities of Mauritius. Besides being responsible for nationwide sensitisation campaigns and provide information on cancer to all stakeholders and maintain the Cancer Registry, the Agency will conduct clinical auditing of cancer and set up national guidelines and protocols based on international best practices. It will act as a centre of excellence for the region with regard to management, capacity building, research and palliative care in cancer and will collaborate closely with International Cancer Centres. In the first instance, a sum of Rs 40 million has been earmarked for the setting up of the Agency.
During his visit, Prof Khayat will visit the Cancer Unit at Victoria Hospital and have a meeting with the staff. The programme also consists of a site visit and meeting with Community Health leaders at the Hollyrood Community Centre in Vacoas in connection with the Breast and Cervical Cancer Screening Programme. He will make a presentation on ‘Cancer Control Plan: Challenges, Failures and Success Story’ at the Rajiv Gandhi Science Centre in Bell Village.
Furthermore, Professor Khayat will have meetings at the Victoria Hospital with consultants involved in cancer treatment. Meetings with Non-Governmental Organisations and visits to two private clinics are also on the agenda.
Born in 1956 in Tunisia, David Khayat completed his medical studies at the University of Nice. Early on, he turned to oncology, a subject in which he specialised during his practice at the Paris Hospitals. In 1985 he obtained his Doctorat d’État. In 1990 he was appointed Professor of Medicine, Hospital Physician and Head of the Medical Oncology Department of Pitié-Salpêtrière Hospital Group.
He is Professor Emeritus of several institutions including the Suzhou Institute for Oncohematology in China, and the Matsumoto University in Japan. He is member of several scientific societies and has been a member of ASCO since 1987. He has published more than 500 papers in the field of oncology and clinical pharmacology. He sits on various French, European and International Committees and is one of the members of the steering committee of the World Alliance of Cancer Research organisation and the Associate Editor of the Journal of Clinical Oncology and Cancer. He is also a member of several editorial boards.
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