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NGO calls for more cancer awareness in rural communities

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NGO calls for more cancer awareness in rural communities

By Buchi Onyejiaka

A non-governmental organization (NGO), Project Pink Blue, says cancer awareness in rural communities should be promoted for early detection, prevention and treatment.

Project Pink Blue is an NGO particularly focused on cancer awareness and prevention.

The group’s executive director, Runcie Chidebe, told the Nigerian News Agency (NAN) in Abuja that to reduce the cancer rate in the country, it is also necessary to educate rural communities.

According to Chidebe, the only way to create the necessary cancer awareness in rural communities is for the government to establish a national cancer awareness program like it did with the HIV and AIDS intervention.

“As soon as a woman arrives at any health facility for prenatal consultations, she should be commissioned to screen for breast and cervical cancer, men could also take the opportunity to their prostate screening, ”he said.

Chidebe debunked the belief in some quarters that being diagnosed with cancer was a death sentence.

He noted that the cancer was treatable if caught early.

Speaking to residents of some rural communities in the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, NAN found that many of them had little or no knowledge about cancer.

Sarah Olasunmi, a resident of the Kabusa community, said she had heard of cancer before but did not know what causes it or how to prevent it.

Charity Joseph of Apo, said all she knew about breast cancer was that it killed women who had it.

she confessed that she never knew you could screen regularly to find out if you had any.

Victoria David, a resident of Kuje, however, said she had heard about the screening but did not know where to go for it.

she urged the government to sensitize rural communities on where to go for testing as well as prevention strategies.

Nigeria’s National Cancer Plan 2018-2022 states that cancer is responsible for 72,000 deaths in Nigeria each year, with around 102,000 new cancer cases per year. (NOPE)

(NAN)

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