"Be wary of over-concentration on breast cancer activities only in October" - MBCF cautions Gov't
The Meena Breast Cancer Foundation (MBCF), a non-governmental organisation has cautioned government to be wary of its over- concentration of breast cancer activities only in October.
According to MBCF, it is not the best and thus not helping in the fight against breast cancer in Ghana.
Speaking at a press conference in Accra on Wednesday, he said "I want the media to know that just as certain months are designated to highlight certain events, it is very important that we don't over-concentrate on the month. The months mean nothing"
"If we advicate breast cancer in only October then we are trouble. Breast Cancer does not only occur in October"
"Don't put all your energies in October, because people are getting breast cancer by the minute"
"Government should be wary of over-concentration of breast cancer activities only in October"
He revealed that Meena Breast Cancer Foundation is currently constructing a health facility at Gomoa Potsin in the Central Region.
He stressed that the facility when completed will have an OPD, Theatre, Breast Screening Centre, Laboratory, Dispensary, Consulting room, Nurses Station as well as male and female wards.
"Globally, breast cancer is the 2nd leading disease causing mortality among women in Africa"
Mr. Kwarteng explained that there were 4,482 breast cancer cases in Ghana with over 2,055 death according to a global observatory.
He hinted that failure to regularly educate people about breast cancer is what leads to deaths.
On her part Programmes Manager, Ministry of Health, Abena Saah said "Breast cancer is a global health issue, but it holds a particular significance for us in Ghana. The burden of breast cancer is substantial, with thousands of women affected by this disease each year"
"It's essential for us to raise awareness, dispel myths, and promote early detection and prevention"
"Breast cancer does not discriminate. It affects women of all ages, backgrounds, and socioeconomic statuses. However, it is essential to recognize that early detection can significantly improve survival rates"
She hinted that regular breast self-exams and mammograms are vital tools in identifying this disease at an early, more treatable stage.
She notedthat the Ministry of Health is committed to addressing this challenge.
"We have been working to increase access to healthcare services and education, particularly in rural areas, where awareness and resources can be limited"
"Education and awareness are critical in the fight against breast cancer. We are working on public health campaigns, collaborating with healthcare providers, and engaging with communities to spread the message of early detection and the importance of regular check-ups"
"Breast cancer is not a battle that one person can win alone. It requires a collective effort from healthcare professionals, policymakers, and our communities" .
"We call upon all Ghanaians to come together to support one another, to learn about breast cancer, and to take steps to protect themselves and their loved ones"
Board Member, Meena Breast Cancer Foundation, Eric Brobbery said "We live in a country where there is no proper protocols when it comes to breast cancer"
"The three Northern Regions do not have mammograms machines to help detect and deal with breast cancer cases"
He appealed to government furnish most hospitals with equipments to help save lives.
Midwife at the Tema General Hospital, Dorothy Kesewah Denkyi said "We have come to realise that communication was a major problem especially among the school children"
"They don't have anything on their curriculum that talks about health"
"To some, it was their first time hearing of what breast cancer was. We were very amazed"
She hinted that in some communities, residents were reluctant to go for the screening of their breast while other had misconceptions.
A breast cancer survivor, Joycelyn Yaokumah noted that breast cancer treatment are expensive hence appeal to government to come to their aid.
She, however, thanked the leadership of Meena Breast Cancer Foundation for saving her life and supporting with some funds.
Thinknewsonline.com also gathered that the Meena Breast Cancer Foundation was set up in memory of late Madam Amina Oppong Kwarteng who died of breast cancer, a year ago.
Story by: Joshua Kwabena Smith