Author Topic: Cancer Named Africa's new health burden  (Read 258 times)

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Cancer Named Africa's new health burden
« on: February 04, 2017, 02:41:50 PM »
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"I can, we can defeat cancer" is this year's theme on World Cancer Day. In many African countries there is still a lack of awareness and treatment methods, but the number of people affected is on the rise.

For some people, World Cancer Day is just a day that comes and goes. Our social media feeds fill up with hashtags and colorful ribbons but many of us are still far removed from the severity of the disease.

The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates 8.2 million people die annually of cancer and the numbers are expected to triple by 2030. Most of the cancer deaths occur in developing countries. In the past many believed cancer was not an African problem. The last few years have proven the contrary. Medical practitioners are now urging governments to invest more in the fight against the disease.

"I confirm that Cancer is a public health problem throughout the continent. It should be given the priority it deserves into health and development agendas," WHO regional adviser Dangou Jean-marie told reporter.

WHO states that infections caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV) and hepatitis B and C viruses significantly contribute to the burden of the top two cancers in Africa, namely cervical and liver cancer.

Author's personal story

My friend Linda Mumbua passed away last year in Nairobi. At 37, she left left behind three children, the youngest was only two years old. Like many cancer patients, Linda was a case of wrong and late diagnosis. She had severe stomach pains and visited two different hospitals in Nairobi.



 

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