When a child is seriously ill with cancer, only one thing comes first: cure. That is why at the Princess Máxima Center for pediatric oncology we work together every day in a groundbreaking and passionate way to improve the survival rate and quality of life of children with cancer. Now, and in the longer term. Because children still have a whole life ahead of them. The Princess Máxima Center is not an ordinary hospital, but a research hospital. All children with cancer in the Netherlands are treated here. This makes the Princess Máxima Center the largest pediatric cancer center in Europe. Over 450 researchers and 900 healthcare professionals work closely with Dutch and international hospitals on better treatments and new perspectives on cures.
In this way, we give the child of today the very best care and take important steps to improve the chances of survival for the children who are not yet cured.
A unique mission
In 2018, the Princess Máxima Center for Pediatric Oncology opened; a center where the best healthcare professionals and scientists come together in the field of pediatric oncology, to work together on a unique mission: to cure every child with cancer, with optimal quality of life. A mission that remains urgent, as one in four children with cancer dies, and many children who do survive experience the effects of radical treatments throughout their lives.
A unique center
On the board of the Princess Máxima Center, the founders have an essential position: parents of patients and healthcare professionals. The center is designed from the experiences and needs of children and their parents. Bringing all patients and experts in the Netherlands together in one place has given an impulse to the quality of treatments and has made it possible to better investigate various forms of childhood cancer, including rare forms. This makes us leading in the world.
The center has come about thanks to the support of the entire Netherlands; currently diagnosis and treatment are financed by health insurance companies and there is a contribution from the Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport. However: to finance innovative treatments and advanced research, the center is completely dependent on the support of small and major donors.
A center that is all about integrating care and research
The Princess Máxima Center has the ambition to integrate care and research in pediatric cancer. We face the challenge of making the care team part of the research and vice versa. For example, the disease committees, where together the treatment methods for tomorrow are developed. But also the so-called tumor boards, where doctors, fundamental and applied researchers discuss all children and their diseases individually. Continuous interaction between care and research leads to better care today and new treatment methods for tomorrow. The close cooperation between care and research ensures new treatments and new perspectives. This unique way of working at the Princess Máxima Center ensures that we contribute to and gain maximum benefit from developments in science. Currently, innovations in various fields are giving impulse to those new treatments, such as immunotherapy and, stem cell transplantation, the development of organoids and sequencing of all tumors. Breakthroughs are also in the area of psychosocial support for child and family, during treatment and focused on life afterwards. Not every child with cancer is cured yet. But the Princess Máxima Center is the best place to have your child treated.
A research hospital
The Princess Máxima Center is not an ordinary hospital, but a research hospital, the largest pediatric cancer center in Europe. Here, more than 450 scientists work on fundamental, translational and clinical research. Together with their colleagues in Dutch academic centers, international hospitals and specialized research centers, they take important steps in curing children and improving their quality of life in the longer term. The representation of children and parents on the board ensures that decisions include their perspective. Never losing sight of the fact that it is also about caring for today's child and family.
Improving survival rates as well as quality of life
When a child is seriously ill with cancer, only one thing is paramount: cure. At the same time, every treatment immediately raises dilemmas, concerns and questions: what does this mean for the quality of life now and later? For example, will my daughter still be able to play sports, go to school or have children? Every day we work together in a pioneering and passionate way to improve both the survival rate and the quality of life of children with cancer. Now, and in the longer term. Because children still have a whole life ahead of them.