July 13, 2015 | By Dr. James Kafeero, as told to Mary Engel
Dr. James Kafeero is a physician with the Uganda Cancer Institute in Kampala, Uganda, and a research fellow with the UCI/Hutchinson Center Cancer Alliance, which recently opened a state-of-the-art research, training and outpatient center in Kampala.
One patient I remember well came in at 4 years [of age] with acute lymphocytic leukemia. We managed this child. He went into remission. He began going to school. He would come back for reviews. Then, at 7 years [of age], the disease recurred.
When the child was about to die, the mother called for me. I came. Because of the long journey we had made, it was very, very painful to see this child go down. And I’ll never, never forget what the mother said.
She said, “I love the Uganda Cancer Institute.” And I said, “How can you love us?” She said, “You’ve given me three years of hope. This child has had a chance to be a child. Now let me hand this child to God.”