Equip cancer treatment units to take care of people suffering from cancer diseases-Oncology Nurse to Government
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), Cancer is the second leading cause of death globally, and was responsible for 8.8 million deaths in 2015. Globally, nearly one in six deaths is due to cancer. Approximately 70 per cent of deaths from cancer occur in low and middle income countries. In 2020, the diagnosis and treatment of cancer was hampered by the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.
For example, reduced access to care because of health care setting closures resulted in delays in diagnosis and treatment that may lead to a short-term drop in cancer incidence followed by an uptick in advanced stage disease and ultimately increased mortality.
Speaking to Zaa news an Oncology nurse at the Tamale Teaching Hospital (TTH), Evelyn Osei-Amoah appealed to the government to equip facilities taking care of people suffering from cancer diseases in the country. She said government can help by way of creating awareness and screening women in rural communities, where the disease is killing women for lack of knowledge and awareness.
According to her treatment of breast cancer is expensive and the lack of resources in the country burdens the situation. Ms Evelyn indicates that awareness creation will go a long way to promote early diagnosis and treatment, thus reduce the higher rates recorded in the country. Her appeal comes after the President of Breast Cancer International (BCI), Dr. Beatrice Wiafe Addai called on government to intervene in the upsurge of breast cancer cases in the country.
Dr. Addai revealed that the disease accounted for more than 2, 000 deaths out of 4, 000 women who were diagnosed with breast cancer in 2020 during the covid-19 era, a situation she describes as alarming. Zaa news’ interview with the Oncology nurse further reveals that women in the northern region seek late medical attention due to ignorance making it difficult for them to be treated. She however said much investment should be made on awareness creation and educating the public about the disease and its symptoms.
Ms Evelyn said though the cancer unit at TTH is not fully equipped, management is doing its best to ensure the unit operates effectively. Cancer is a worldwide issue and a burden for the entire world and Ghana, for that matter northern region is not an exception.
By: Lilian D. Walter/zaanews.com/Ghana