Government is set to assist the two Epworth girls affected by Zeroderma Pigmentosa and Skin Cancer with medical attention, Health and Child Care minister, Dr David Parirenyatwa has said.
Minister Parirenyatwa who visited the two girls, Natasha (7) and Bridget (9) at Parirenyatwa Hospital on Monday said government has taken it upon itself to have medical experts look at the girls and take them through chemotherapy and radio therapy.
“It is sad that both kids below the age of 10 are affected by this rare cancer, because of its nature it forms little sore or coalesce into one big sore which is the case with both young girls,
“We have taken it upon ourselves to have them admitted here and have experts look at them and go through chemotherapy and radio therapy,” said Parirenyatwa.
Head of Radio Therapy and Oncology, Dr Ntokozo Ndlovu said the disease which affects one in a million people is rare and makes it difficult to repair the skin once affected.
“This cancer affects 1 in a million people and these children are facing the difficulty of staying indoors and playing at night,
“The cancer should not be exposed to any form of light even a light bulb or light coming out through a window, so when they go into the sun the damages happen every day so they have to stay in dark for the rest of their lives,” said Ndlovu.
In an interview with 263Chat, one of the parents Benedict Makumbe said she is struggling to take care of her daughter without exposing her to light.
“Bridget was affected with this cancer when she was three months old and I have been struggling ever since, as her condition and the environment do not go hand in hand,
“A lot of people still have not accepted her condition my in laws included.
“I cannot even look for a job as I have to monitor her 24/7 and maids never stay long, I also have to hold her hand all the time because she is partially blind now,” said Makumbe.
Parirenyatwa urged citizens to raise awareness on cancer as most deaths have of late been cancer related.
Natasha (7) Bridget (8) were affected by a rare cancer caused by a mismatch of the genes of the parents when they were little babies.