A three-day oral, breast and cervical cancer screening programme ended in Dibrugarh (Assam) on Friday. The programme spread over for three days (from September 5 to 7 last) and was a joint collaboration between Assam Cancer Care Foundation (ACCF) (an initiative of the Government of Assam and Tata Trusts), Assam Medical College (AMC), Dibrugarh District Health Services, Pratishruti Dibrugarh and the Dibrugarh edition of the All Assam Students’ Union (AASU).
In this entire three-day period, 433 screening tests were done, out of which 47 cases were found with suspicious lesions and were referred to AMC. The suspicious cases will be followed up for further investigation and treatment by Pratishruti and ACCF. There was huge response towards the screening programme
Cancer is rising at an alarming rate in Assam with about 50,000 new cancer cases detected every year in the State. The number of adults consuming tobacco is one of the highest in the State with 48.2 per cent against 28.6 per cent in the country. Fifty per cent of all cancer and 90 per cent of all oral cancer cases are directly related to tobacco consumption. However, 70 per cent of the cancer cases are presented at an advanced stage and only 30 per cent at an early stage, resulting in Assam attributing for a high mortality rate due to cancer.
With the need to shift focus from curative to awareness and early detection programmes and thereby increasing chances of a patient’s survival, ACCF will conduct regular community screening camps across Assam with the objective of early detection of cancer, by partnering with like-minded organisations.
Speaking on the occasion, Dr N Hazarika, Medical Advisor, ACCF, said, “ACCF will build 19 state-of-the-art cancer care hospitals all over Assam. These hospitals will be fully equipped with all necessary resources – both infrastructure and manpower – to fulfill its vision of providing comprehensive and affordable end-to-end cancer care starting from awareness, prevention, early detection to palliative care and that too nearby to their place of residence.”