Cancer has emerged as the most dangerous disease in Assam, whether in urban or in rural. There are areas in which people suffering from cancer have to count their days to death. Along with the increasing numbers of cases of cancer, the numbers of deaths have also been increased.
Many villages in Assam reported at least 10-15 deaths per year due to the deadly disease. It may be mentioned that Balitara village in Nalbari and Ghoramari village in Sonitpur are witnessing huge number of cases of cancer since long.
Although the medical facilities have improved in Assam to some extent but there are villages or areas which are much backward and people are still unaware as to how they can get rid of such diseases or where they should get treated.
According to doctors, cancer is preventable only when people get diagnosed at the very beginning but in such villages like Balitara or Ghoramari, people are not aware of the advanced treatment. The state government also does not bother to visit such places to make the people aware of the disease and how they could prevent it. It is not only these two villages but there are many others that witnessed a large number of cancer cases and people are losing lives out of it.
Notably, in Ghoramari in Sonitpur, 15 people have lost their lives due to cancer in the last year and there are more people who are suffering from the disease. Reports have also been stated that 4 people of a family died of cancer in the village.
On the other hand, the Balitara village also recorded many number of cancer cases. Several NGOs have also studied as to why most of the people in the village are suffering from the disease but there is no outcome.
Unfortunately, according to the union health ministry data, Assam recorded 1,10,857 cancer cases in the last three years (2018-2020) out of which 66,800 people died.
In 2018, 36,029 people have been detected with the disease while 21,715 people died. In 2019, 36,948 people suffered from the disease out of which 22,261 people died in Assam.
In 2020, 37,880 people have been detected with cancer out of which 22,824 people died.
In Guwahati and the northeast, the number of oral cancer is higher as people have the habit of chewing tobacco and betel nut, smoking, etc. Gastrointestinal cancers, especially gall bladder cancer, are also very high in the region. It is because of the lack of awareness. Poor economic conditions add to the number of cancer patients from this region as such people find it difficult to treat as they cannot afford the treatment. There should be regular campaigns against chewing of gutkha, smoking at an early age, etc. in order to prevent the disease.