Journal Articles

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JCO Global Oncology


PURPOSE: Cancer deaths in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) will nearly double by 2040. Available evidence-based interventions (EBIs) for cancer prevention and early detection can reduce cancer-related mortality, yet there is a lack of evidence on effectively scaling these EBIs in LMIC settings.

METHODS: We conducted a scoping review to identify published literature from six databases between 2012 and 2022 that described efforts for scaling cancer prevention and early detection EBIs in LMICs. Included studies met one of two definitions of scale-up: (1) deliberate efforts to increase the impact of effective intervention to benefit more people or (2) an intervention shown to be efficacious on a small scale expanded under real-world conditions to reach a greater proportion of eligible population. Study characteristics, including EBIs, implementation strategies, and outcomes used, were summarized using frameworks from the field of implementation science.

RESULTS: This search yielded 3,076 abstracts, with 24 studies eligible for inclusion. Included studies focused on a number of cancer sites including cervical (67%), breast (13%), breast and cervical (13%), liver (4%), and colon (4%). Commonly reported scale-up strategies included developing stakeholder inter-relationships, training and education, and changing infrastructure. Barriers to scale-up were reported at individual, health facility, and community levels. Few studies reported applying conceptual frameworks to guide strategy selection and evaluation.

CONCLUSION: Although there were relatively few published reports, this scoping review offers insight into the approaches used by LMICs to scale up cancer EBIs, including common strategies and barriers. More importantly, it illustrates the urgent need to fill gaps in research to guide best practices for bringing the implementation of cancer EBIs to scale in LMICs.


Humans, Developing Countries, Delivery of Health Care, Health Services, Neoplasms

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