Hospitals & Services
The team at the Children's Haematology Oncology Centre (CHOC) belong to several international study groups:
Children's Oncology Group (COG, USA),
International Society of Paediatric Oncology (SIOP, worldwide)
Australia and New Zealand Children's Haematology Oncology Group (ANZCHOG)
These groups develop treatment trials for most paediatric oncology conditions, often comparing the best known treatment with a subtle variation. During a trial, treatment and associated side-effects and long-term outcome are closely monitored. Clinical Research Associates/ Coordinators (CRAs) on CHOC manage the study-related activities.
If a child, adolescent or young adult is considered eligible for a clinical trial, the details of this will be discussed. The parents and patient (if appropriate for age) will be given an Information Sheet and Consent Form relating to the particular trial. Entry onto a clinical trial is voluntary.
All parents will be given an Information Sheet and Consent form about tissue banking for them to consider. The Tissue Bank ensures that tissue, in excess of that required for diagnosis, already taken or removed at surgery can be saved and kept to allow future research with the potential to further advance knowledge about the condition.
CHOC participates in the New Zealand Child Cancer Registry, this is funded by the Ministry of Health to ensure accurate data is kept about the type and incidence of Childhood Cancers in New Zealand.
As a unit involved in research, we are required to ensure that the Health and Disability Ethics Committee (HDEC) has approved all studies before they are opened at our centre. HDEC reviews and approves all aspects of the study, including the Patient Information Sheets and Consent forms.
The research team in CHOC comprises of……everyone! It is very much a team activity and everyone who comes through the doors plays a part, either directly or indirectly. There are some people who are more involved in the research side who are known as CRAs. They collect data and assist the clinical team with study requirements.
Research results suggest that children enrolled and treated using clinical trials have better outcomes, as a result of both new treatment combinations, as well as all the investigations and follow-up required. Our participation in these studies is important because it not only offers our patients the best treatment options, but also adds to the growing body of knowledge about childhood malignancies.