Since childhood, Arturo Zapata López dreamed of becoming a doctor. His desires to learn about the human body and to help people motivated him to choose medicine as a profession and lifestyle. He was drawn to pediatric oncological diseases because children are the present and future of society, and there is always something to learn from them. Scientific evidence shows that pediatric cancer survival improves in settings with research programs. His aim is to contribute to promoting pediatric cancer survival in his country and encourage collaborative work.
Dr. Zapata earned his medical degree in 2010 from the Universidad Ricardo Palma in Lima, Peru. He completed training in pediatrics in 2014 at the Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos in Lima, Peru and a pediatric oncology fellowship in 2016 at the Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia in Lima, Peru.
Dr. Zapata currently works as a pediatric oncologist at the National Cancer Institute (Instituto Nacional de Enfermedades Neoplásicas), a public tertiary cancer center that provides care to 65% of patients with childhood cancer in Peru. His current interests are quality improvement projects, reducing abandonment rates, and research in pediatric leukemia, retinoblastoma, and Hodgkin lymphoma. He also serves as the Pediatric Leukemia Committee Coordinator in Peru and participates in other local initiatives with the support of the Peruvian Ministry of Health.
Dr. Zapata has been involved in the development of the first Latin American pediatric acute lymphoblastic leukemia protocol, “POLA-01.” Under the mentorship of St Jude Children’s Research Hospital, this group has taken on the mission to bridge the gap in access to quality care and improve outcomes for children with acute lymphoblastic leukemia in Peru.
“My efforts are towards finding strategies and developing policies to improve the care of pediatric cancer patients in my region. Based on the historic collaborative work with St. Jude, I believe that this Master of Global Health will provide me the skills and knowledge to accomplish the St. Jude mission of finding cures and saving children everywhere.”
Hometown: Lima, Peru
MD – Universidad Ricardo Palma, Lima, Peru (2010)
Fellowship, Pediatric Oncology – Universidad Peruana Cayetano Heredia, Lima, Peru (2016)
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