Dr. Selekwa Msiba receives CIRGO award

The MUHAS-ORCI-UCSF Cancer Collaboration Team (left to right): Kwinoja Kapiteni, Sumaiya Haddadi, Dr. Beatrice Mushi, Dr. Selekwa Msiba, and Dr. Zainab Illonga

The Global Cancer Program is excited to announce that our partner Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences (MUHAS) received an award from The Coalition for Implementation Research in Global Oncology (CIRGO) to develop, implement, and evaluate a context-appropriate multifaceted intervention to improve tracheostomy and gastrostomy tube care for cancer patients in Tanzania.  This research is led by Dr. Selekwa Msiba, Clinical Research Coordinator for the MUHAS-ORCI-UCSF Cancer Collaboration. Head and neck cancers (HNC) and esophageal cancer (EC) are the sixth and seventh most common malignancies in the world, respectively, and both are highly prevalent in East Africa. As a result of airway obstruction and dysphagia in HNC and EC patients, tracheostomy and gastrostomy tube placement are common medical procedures. Annually, 140 tracheostomies and 130 gastrostomy tubes are placed at Muhimbili National Hospital (MNH), the largest national referral hospital in Tanzania. Clinicians caring for HNC and EC patients in Tanzania report that patients frequently face complications that can lead to unplanned hospital readmissions and treatment delays, negatively impacting patients’ outcomes. Dr. Msiba noted these challenges while supporting other studies in the endoscopy unit and developed the proposal recently funded through the CIRGO award.

Dr. Msiba hard at work supporting studies at MUHAS



"As a medical doctor and researcher, addressing patients' pressing needs identified through clinical practice or research, is a rewarding feeling.  From my current role as a Clinical Researcher, I observed a number of patients with gastrostomy and tracheostomy tubes succumbing to complications that lead to unplanned treatment breaks and ultimately poor outcomes. This drove me to come up with potential interventions focusing on improving tracheostomy and gastrostomy care for Head and Neck (HNC) and Esophageal Cancer (EC) patients respectively at our National Hospital in Tanzania, that can also be translated to other similar settings. Efforts to secure the 2022 CIRGO grant to implement this study project is a true reflection of good mentorship from both local and international mentors through the Global Cancer Program with support from the MUHAS-ORCI-UCSF Cancer Collaboration Program team. 

To upcoming researchers, inspiration starts within peers and self.  Keeping your eyes open and being vigilant on what's happening in your study cohorts/settings and thinking of initiatives to mitigate the observed challenges, is what the community expects from us."


Through this study, the team aims to develop, implement, and evaluate a context-appropriate multifaceted intervention. The interventions strategy will be developed through an intervention mapping framework and will focus on education and systems restructuring.

Specifically, the aims are to (1) design a multifaceted intervention for tracheostomy and gastrostomy tube care based upon an assessment of context-specific needs of patients, caregivers, and clinicians at MNH (2) to implement a context-appropriate intervention for tracheostomy and gastrostomy tube care at MNH, and (3) to assess the feasibility and patient outcomes following implementation of a multifaceted intervention for tracheostomy and gastrostomy tube care at MNH.

Dr. Msiba presenting at the African Organization in Research Training in Cancer (AORTIC) 2019 conference



Please join us in sharing congratulations with Dr. Msiba and the entire MUHAS-ORCI-UCSF Cancer Collaboration team.