Bhubaneswar, Oct 26: In a view to make India a Cancer-free zone, a 3-day cancer awareness drive has been launched in Odisha on Wednesday. The campaign initiative has been taken up by the DCB Bank in collaboration with the Jagannath Cancer Aid Foundation (JACAF).
As a start, a seminar was held at the Rabindra Mandap here, which threw light on the importance of screening and early detection of cancer, counselling and treatment. This 3 day seminar programme was inaugurated by the State Finance and Health Minister, Pradeep Kumar Amat. As per the data collected by Indian Council of Medical Research, in 2016 present, the total number of cancer patients in India is 14.5 lakhs and it is expected to increase to 17.3 lakh by 2020 and the death rate due to cancer will rise to 8.8 lakh from 7.36 lakh by 2020, informed Pradip Kumar Amat, who also thanked the foundation for coming up with such awareness campaign. Adding to this, he said ‘only 12.5% patients come for treatment in early stages. Cancer can be only cured when it will treated at early stages’.
Besides, Dr Kumar Prabhash of Tata Memorial Hospital and Dr Shishir Shetty of Hiranandani Fortis Hospital and DY Patil Hospital from Mumbai led the seminar. Padmashree Dr Prafulla Kar, the award-winning Oriya musician and writer also graced the event. Along with these eminent personalities, another important person was also seen at the event who said that earlier just as Small-pox and Polio-free campaigning drives were formed to create awareness and alertness among people, similarly this cancer awareness campaign in India will also help to eradicate cancer and make the nation an effective fighter for Cancer. All this was said by the Bhubaneswar North Zone MLA, Priyadarshi Mishra.
Jagannath Cancer Aid Foundation (JACAF) is a 20-year old charitable trust with a special desk in Tata Memorial Hospital, Mumbai and a shelter home at Navi Mumbai. It provides non-medical assistance to cancer patients coming to the metropolis for treatment at TMH. “The trust provides a home away from home’ environment that includes homemade food, comfortable commute from the shelter home to TMH through its own bus service, counsel patients and their kin, and provides medicines and offers financial support to poor patients. It conducts free cancer detections and awareness camps in Mumbai, Odisha and other states on a regular basis. Since its inception, the trust has organized 95 awareness and 80 detection camps for around 10,650 patients, arranged 130,050 guest days and assisted more than 15,000 patients at TMH. Soon, the trust would come up with a 100-bed shelter home at Kharghar, Navi Mumbai, on its own premises”, informed the General Secretary of JACAF, Smt Kavita Mishra.
After today, the campaign event will be organized in two more districts of Odisha named Khurda and Cuttack on October 27 and October 28 respectively.