IAEA and Islamic Development Bank Harness the Power of Innovation to Address Women’s Cancers 

This week, on the sidelines of the IAEA General Conference, IsDB, in partnership with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) held the “Saving Women’s Lives from Cancer” side event. 

This week, on the sidelines of the IAEA General Conference, IsDB, in partnership with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) held the “Saving Women’s Lives from Cancer” side event. 

The event was a chance to take stock of achievements over the past year since launch of the partnership initiative “Saving Women’s Lives from Cancer”, and how it has moved forward and started implementation, despite difficult COVID-19 times. The event outlined how IsDB and IAEA complement each other to advance comprehensive cancer diagnostics and treatment for women with breast and cervical cancer in common member states from LMICs.

During the event, the winners of the Call for Innovation were also announced, along with the launch of the Trust Fund that will allow new donors and partners to provide substantive funding to the Initiative. The platform will marshal more multi-resources from public, private and philanthropic sectors coalition as well as people at large under a financial blending mechanism, namely the Public-Private-Philanthropic Partnership for People’s (5Ps). In February 2021 IsDB will be holding an official pledge so we can bring global partners together around this important initiative. At this point, IsDB and IAEA will also be launching the Trust Fund to continue the important work in transforming women’s lives.

The long-standing partnership between the IsDB and the IAEA will be entering a new phase. The initiative has so far mobilized more than US$ 27.5 million including US$ 8.3 million from IsDB, US$ 7.5 million from IAEA, US$ 9.0 million from member countries, and US$ 2.7 million from external partners. 

As the global cancer burden continues to increase, international organizations, including multi-lateral development banks, need to be united in the desire to work together to address this challenge. 

H.E. Dr Bandar Hajjar noted, “By joining forces, IsDB and IAEA will provide a concrete platform delivering tangible results to comprehensively address cancer prevention, screening, diagnostic and treatment services for women in joint Member Countries and thus contributing to saving over 1 million women’s lives from breast cancer and 3.7 million women’s lives from cervical cancer over the next decade”.

The “Call for Innovation” was launched through our IsDB platform Engage, a digital hub which will accelerate economic and social progress in the developing world through the power of science, technology and innovation. Applications were received from 36 countries and selected by the IsDB Scientific Advisory Board. All winners will receive $50,000 to help them advance their projects and contribute to saving women’s lives

The winners are:

  • The City Cancer Challenge Foundation, whose proposal will increase access to quality care for women with breast cancer, and help with training healthcare professionals to offer a multi-disciplinary approach to cancer care.
  • The International Centre for Diarrhoeal Disease Research, with an innovative screening toolkit that will have a sustainable impact on the early detection of breast and cervical cancer in low-resource, rural coastal areas. 
  • The innovator Virasoft Inc. has app technology with the potential to be a real game changer. ViMo will help train pathologists for consultations while TelePath will give pathologists with less experience the opportunity to share images and videos with experts. 
  • The Cervical Cancer Prevention Program, whose socially innovative proposal aims to establish a community-based screening, treatment and vaccination activities revolving around mother-daughter relationships. 

Congratulations to all the winners.