Today at the U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit in Washington, D.C., Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm and Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security Ambassador Bonnie D. Jenkins announced additional U.S. support for the International Atomic Energy Agency’s (IAEA) Rays of Hope initiative. Funding of up to $4 million will support the Agency’s Rays of Hope initiative aimed at expanding access to life-saving cancer radiotherapy treatments in Africa. They were joined by IAEA Deputy Director General for the Department of Nuclear Sciences and Applications Najat Mokhtar. With this announcement, the United States reaffirms its commitment to bringing equity to global healthcare and the pursuit of the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
The IAEA established the Rays of Hope initiative to assist developing countries to detect and treat cancer by providing equipment and training. Rays of Hope builds on the decades-long effort by the IAEA to work with international organizations, national health authorities, and health care providers to establish effective national cancer treatment systems. Many of these activities serve to increase availability of radiotherapy via medical linear accelerators, thereby demonstrating the nexus between radiological security and improved access to peaceful uses of nuclear technology. The United States has supported these efforts for nearly two decades, with over $23 million in voluntary contributions provided by the United States having been used by the IAEA to support projects under the Rays of Hope initiative.
For more information on Rays of Hope, contact the IAEA or visit their website at https://www.iaea.org/services/rays-of-hope.