CECP offers free cancer screening in October to mark awareness month

cancer----CopyTHE Committee Encouraging Corporate Philanthropy (CECP-Nigeria) in partnership with the National Cancer Prevention Programme (NCPP) are inviting members of the public to come with their friends and families for free cancer screening with focus on breast, cervical and prostate cancers.

Executive Secretary, CECP-Nigeria, Dr. Abia Nzelu, in a press statement said the event had been scheduled for Thursday, October 1, 2015 in line with the International Cancer Awareness Month (ICAM). The ICAM is a yearly international campaign against the cancer pandemic, especially breast cancer, the most common cancer among women globally. The symbolic colour for the month of October is pink. The colour pink is not only used in relation to breast cancer, but also refers to health in general, hence the phrase ‘in the pink of health.’

The statement said: “ICAM is a reminder for societies to take an active role in ensuring that their citizens remain in excellent health (the pink of health) by going for regular health screening, and supporting initiatives aimed at improving the health of society at large. This is particularly important in Nigeria, which has the twelfth lowest life expectancy in the world. Most Nigerians do not live to retire to see their grandchildren, or to enjoy the fruits of their labour. Cancer is a major cause of untimely death in Nigeria.

“The target beneficiaries of this exercise that will include free wellness conference, health education and wellness advocacy are women aged 18 years and above and men 40 years and above. The programme will commence at 1:00 p.m. at the Media Centre of the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), National Arts Theatre, Iganmu, Lagos.

“This free cancer screening exercise is a foretaste of the more extensive community-based, mass cancer screening that will take place following the acquisition of the Mobile Cancer Centres (MCC) which is the goal of the “Big War Against Cancer in Nigeria”, the flagship focal cause of CECP. The “Big War Against Cancer is aimed at “Taking holistic health care to the Grassroots” using Mobile Cancer Centres (MCC) and Comprehensive Cancer Centres (CCC). The first phase involves raising funds to acquire/deploy 37 MCCs one for each state and Abuja.”

“An MCC is much more than a Mobile Mammogram. Rather, it is a clinic on wheels, in which screening, follow-up and treatment (including surgeries), can take place. It includes facilities for mammography, sonology, colonoscopy, colposcopy and cry therapy, as well as a surgical theatre. It is also equipped with facilities for screening against most common diseases, including the 10 major cancer-related killer diseases: diabetes, renal disease, obesity, malaria, schistosomiasis, Helicobacter pylori, hepatitis, Human Immuno-deficiency Virus (HIV)/Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS), Human Papillomavirus (HPV) and hypertension.

“CECP’s operational partner for the Big War Against Cancer is the National Cancer Prevention Programme (NCPP), a non-governmental initiative founded in 2007. Over 100,000 Nigerians have been directly screened and treated so far by the NCPP, and through the awareness created, the NCPP is helping to protect millions of Nigerians from cancer. This monumental effort, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO), has contributed immensely to the reduction of cervical cancer deaths in Nigeria from 26 daily in 2008 to 22 daily in 2012. The MCC will facilitate the process of scaling up this effort,” the statement further said.

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