Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation in Childhood Cancer

World Physiotherapy: IPT-HOPE – Online Educational Session

Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation in Childhood Cancer, Global Perspectives and Learning from the COVID-19 Pandemic

Date: Saturday May 22nd 2021 TBC
Time: 1:00 pm UTC (8:00 am CLST; 8:00 am ET)
Speaker: Pia Delano SLAOP, SIOP, SOCHKO. & Abu Sidhanee MCSP, CCLG, SIOP

Speaker Bio: Pia Delano is a physiotherapist from Chile who has been working with pediatric cancer patients for more than 5 years in the Oncology rehabilitation center of Fundacion Nuestros Hijos. She works both in undergraduate and graduate program teaching about pediatric oncology interventions and has participated in both national and international congresses and lectures. She is an active member of the Latin American Society of Pediatric Cancer (SLAOP), International Society of Pediatric Oncology (SIOP) and the Chilean Society of Physiotherapy Oncology (SOCHKO). She works alongside international colleagues to develop networks between Children’s Cancer rehabilitation professionals with the aim of sharing best practice and supporting practice in resource limited settings.

Speaker Bio: Abu Sidhanee is a Clinical Lead Physiotherapist working in Children’s & Teenage Cancer services at University College Hospital London, UK. He qualified from Leeds Metropolitan University in 2001 and is a member of the Children’s Cancer & Leukemia Group (UK) and the International Society of Paediatric Oncology (SIOP). Abu works as part of a comprehensive multiprofessional team in the care of children and teenagers with a wide range of general and specialist cancer diagnosis. He has a special interest in neurooncology, bone tumors and on-treatment rehabilitation. Abu is also working with colleagues internationally to develop networks between Children’s Cancer rehabilitation professionals with the aim of sharing best practice and supporting practice in resource limited settings.


Session Information: Physical therapy & rehabilitation in children’s cancer is a specialist area with significant differences in service delivery worldwide. Some areas are fortunate to have dedicated and specialised professionals who work in children’s cancer; while others may have children’s therapists who cover cancer amongst several different speciality areas; or even adult focused, generalist Physical therapists who are required to treat children with cancer.

Childhood cancer prevalence remains proportionately lower than adult cancer at both national and global levels, however childhood and adult cancer are significantly different in many ways. There are significant inequities between childhood cancer survival in high-income countries in comparison to low and middle-income countries.

Aside from survival, children in low-income countries do not have the same access to treatment as their counterparts in high-income settings. Rehabilitation, including physical therapy, is an emerging field in many settings and will require a multi-faceted approach to develop in the coming years and decades. Paediatric cancer rehabilitation approaches can be is also quite different to adult care, combining cardiorespiratory, neurological, musculoskeletal and developmental methods, while also involving the child or
adolescent and their family at the centre of the process. This unique setting requires physical therapists who know why, when, how and what to do, and it may be one of the reasons that there are so few physiotherapist specialized in the area.

Despite children not experiencing the devastating effects of the COVID-19 virus in the same way as adult populations, children are still affected by the effects of the pandemic. Cancer services in general in many settings were disrupted and children’s cancer services too were also affected. Despite the many challenges that occurred, children’s cancer physical therapy & rehabilitation professionals were required to adapt and innovate through the pandemic. Significant learning occurred and lessons learned, such as telerehabilitation interventions, will be
carried forward after the global pandemic ends.

In this webinar entitled, “Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation in Childhood Cancer, Global Perspectives and learning from the COVID-19”, we will cover Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation in Childhood Cancer including aims and approaches to treatment. We will also overview Global Perspectives in childhood cancer with an emphasis on highlighting the significant inequities which exist in this area. The second half of the webinar will cover reflections and learning points from the global pandemic from the perspective of 2 different children’s cancer treatment
centres. We will highlight the challenges experienced by physical therapy & rehabilitation professionals working in children’s cancer and also the opportunities and lessons learned which we hope to continue to develop after the pandemic ends.

This webinar will cover the following four areas:

  1. Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation in Childhood Cancer – Pia Delano
  2. Global Perspectives in Childhood Cancer – Abu Sidhanee
  3. Learning from the Pandemic from Santiago, Chile – Pia Delano
  4. Learning from the Pandemic from London, UK – Abu Sidhanee

To Join the Zoom Meeting:
Time: May 22, 2021 07:00 AM Central Time (US and Canada)
Meeting ID: 820 2062 3697
Passcode: 410615
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