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FG raises alarm on rising breast cancer cases

The Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire,  says cancer is an emerging disease threat in Nigeria, stressing that a well-thought-out strategy is needed to forestall the…

The Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire,  says cancer is an emerging disease threat in Nigeria, stressing that a well-thought-out strategy is needed to forestall the growing trend.

He said reports from Nigeria cancer registries showed a significant increase in breast cancer incidence from 13.7% per 100, 000 in 1960s to 1969, to 24.7 in 1990 -1999 and to 26.1 % in  2000 to 2016 .

Ehanire, who spoke in Abuja on Tuesday during the commemoration of the 2020 International Cancer Week, enjoined medical practitioners and health institutions to add routine physical checks for early cancer detection in their consultations.

He said the situation made his ministry to resolve to harness all available human and material resources to disrupt the pattern.

He said the strategy involved cost effective measures such as improved awareness creation, risk communication for reduction of factors such as carcinogens and self-examination and routine medical examinations.

The minister also launched two documents: the Training Manual, Data Tools and Job Aids for Secondary Prevention of Cervical Cancer in Nigeria and the Costing of the National Strategic Plan for the Prevention and Control of Cervical Cancer in Nigeria.

The minister said the documents were resource materials and crucial for effective risk communication in national strategic plan of the National Cancer Control Plan 2017 to 2021.

Professor Folakemi Odedina of the Department of Pharmacy and Medicine at the University of Florida and keynote speaker at the event stressed the need for actionable research in the prevention, screening and control of cancer in Nigeria.

 

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