IMPHAL Sept 3: To help early detection of cancer and to raise funds for the purpose of helping underprivileged patients, four members of the Breast Cancer Benefit Foundation (BCPBF) led by prominent cancer specialist Dr. Sameer Kaul arrived here and held a conference on cancer for the first time in the state at Hotel Classic today.
The conference will be followed by a free cancer camp on August 4 at Shija Hospital,Langol under the banner ‘Women and Cancer’. The said camp is organized by BCPBF in collaboration with IMA (Manipur chapter) and Shija Hospitals Pvt. Ltd.
Briefing mediapersons at Classic Hotel, Sameer Kaul, president of the foundation stated that the objective of the visit is to set up cancer detection camps in the north east. He said that statistically, residents of violence prone areas like Jammu and Kashmir, Sri Lanka, Afghanistan seem to have higher cancer cases then their less troubled counterparts. A study to observe if there is any relation between the two issues will be initiated by the BCPBF. Further, his counterparts here will also be consulted on effective ways and means to address cancer issues, he said.
Feroz Pasha, BCPBF member added, he visited Manipur some time back and observed the high numbers of cancer cases in the state. He mentioned that cancer is detected in the last stages here and BCPBF decided to give more awareness and to frequently organize detection camps in the north east.
Managing director of Shija Hospitals Pvt. Ltd. Dr. Palin voiced concern on the lack of medical facilities for cancer detection in the state and awareness of cancer symptoms. He said that according to the World Health Organization,by 2020, cancer will be the second largest pandemic killer. He appealed the public to avail the facility of the cancer detection camp at Shija Hospital to be held on Sunday.
At the conference, lectures were given on the disease by doctors from AIIMS, BLK memorial hospital, Apollo Hospital and Apollo Cancer Institute,New Delhi.
A press handout by Mridul Arora, general secretary of the Foundation states that Manipur is assumed to have the highest number of cancer patients next to Mizoram in the north east. Lung, stomach,nasopharynx,non- Hodgkin’s lymphomas and oesophageal cancers are on the rise in Manipuri men whereas women are being diagnosed with lung,breast and cervical cancers.The doctors at the Regional Cancer Centre at RIMS are grappling with inadequate resources and infrastructure in addressing the disease, it said.
Further, the motive of BCPBF is to spread awareness of this ‘elusive’ disease and highlight the importance of prevention,early diagnosis,prompt treatment and rehabilitation of the patients.
To advocate the rights of cancer patients in the state, a charter of demands will also be given to the state health minister and central Health Ministry which includes provision for below poverty line patients to be provided free cancer treatment,to assure health insurance to all citizens through public or private sectors,setting up of palliative care centre by the state governments and highlighting the problematics and nuances of cancer in the national print and electronic medias.
BCPBF has been providing free cancer screening and disbursing costly cancer drugs free of charge to underprivileged patients across South East Asia for the last 18 years.