North East Cancer Hospital and Research Institute marked World Cancer Day by organizing an event in Guwahati on Friday in presence of Managing Director Dr. M.N. Baruah, Director Dr. Raj Changkakoti, doctors and nurses of the hospital.
Speaking at the event Managing Director, Dr M.N. Baruah laid emphasis on this year’s theme “Close the Care Gap” and went on at length about the ways to reduce the gap that cancer patients are facing currently.
Dr. M.N. Baruah said, “There is a wide gap in cancer treatment in developing and developed countries across the world. Similarly there is also a gap in between states in India too. To improve the gap, firstly there has to be improvement in infrastructure facilities in every cancer hospital.”
Dr. Baruah further said, “According to the World Health Organization (WHO), every 10 lakh population needs a cancer hospital.”
Terming this as a gap, Dr. Baruah said, “There is lack of adequate manpower in India which has led to a huge urban and rural divide when it comes to access to cancer diagnosis, treatment and care.”
Further speaking on the need of awareness about cancer treatment in India, director Dr. Raj Changkakoti said, “There is no awareness about the disease among people. Around 70-80 per cent case in India are identified at stage 3 or 4. This is when chances of curing a patient is very less. Negligence on the side of people is the main reason for late detection of the disease further leading to more deaths.”
“We cannot reduce the number of cancer patients by curing the disease; we can reduce the number only by preventing it. For this, people have to fight against offending agents like tobacco consumption. And consumption will stop only when its production is stopped”, Dr. Baruah stated clearly.
Recently Covid-19 has added to the plight of patients. Due to safety issues, patients hesitate to come to hospitals for treatment, which leads to delay in treatment. Moreover, cancer patients who are tested positive cannot be treated right after they are tested negative. This also leads to delay in their treatment.
The North East Cancer Institute is trying their best to reduce the gap that cancer has brought among people. They are trying to reach out to the grass root level by organizing camps to create awareness among people.
February 4th is observed as World cancer day every year with the main objective of creating awareness, prevention and treatment of cancer. World Cancer Day is an initiative of the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC) to support the goals of the World Cancer Declaration, written in 2008.
Notably, cancer is one of the world’s leading causes of death, and it is gradually increasing yearly. According to a study in 2020, globally 17 million people were affected by the disease and around 10 million people died of the disease globally. This nearly rounds to 60 per cent deaths worldwide.
Meanwhile in India, 13.5 lakh cancer cases are detected every year and 6.2 lakh patients die of the disease every year. Also, female patients are a little higher than male patients in India. About 6.5 lakh cases are of males, whereas about 6.8 lakh cases are females.
Lung cancer is the highest in the world whereas in India, breast cancer tops the chart.