LAHORE: : Cancer is a deadly disease and it is spreading quickly in all over the world. World Cancer Day is observed every year on February 4. The purpose of observing this day is to create awareness among people, said speakers at seminar “Improve access to care as cancer is curable” organised by Mir Khalil-ur-Rahman Memorial Society (MKRMS) (Jang Group of Newspapers) and Novartis Pharma.
Cancer is a group of diseases involving abnormal cell growth with the potential to invade or spread to other parts of the body. There are many reasons for this disease. There are many types of cancer, including skin, lungs, brain, large intestine and mouth cancer. In all types of cancer, some of the body's cells begin to divide without stopping and spread into surrounding tissues, the speakers said.
Khawaja Salman Rafique, Minister for Specialized Healthcare and Medical Education, chaired the seminar. Dr Hafeez Butt, Head of Department, University of Lahore Teaching Hospital, Dr Ejaz Shah, Ex-Head Punjab Medical College, Faisalabad, Dr Khalid, Head of Department Faisalabad Medical University, Dr Abbas Khokhar, Assistant Professor, King Edward Medical University and Mayo Hospital, Dr Ramesh Kumar, MNA and Dr Rashid Zia, Principal Allama Iqbal Medical College, were the speakers. Wasif Nagi, pride of performance, hosted the event and Khaleeq Hamid recited Holy Quran and Naat.
Khawaja Salman Rafique said that Population of Pakistan is growing rapidly. “People don’t pay attention to take precautionary measures. Health department is working efficiently under the supervision of Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif. We are improving our system. We are short of oncologists. We are striving to fill this space. Hospitals are being revamped,” the minister said.
The quality of district hospitals has also been improved. Mammography machines are placed in Nishtar Hospital, Multan and Lady Atchison Hospital, Lahore. In next three months, an ICU having capacity of 30 beds will be completed and in Punjab a urology hospital will be set up soon, he said.
Dr Ramesh Kumar said life is incomplete without serving others. Life is in which we help others and give them relief. Pakistanis can sacrifice their selves for others. We only talk. This is time to act upon. We need to improve ourselves, he said.
Professor Dr Rashid Zia said World Cancer Day is observed every year. Theme of this year is “I can, We can”. We can do anything all together. Diagnosis is very important for treatment of any disease. We should keep precautionary measures in mind, he added.
Dr Hafeez Butt said creating awareness about any disease among people is very necessary. Cancer has many symptoms. The signs and symptoms will depend on where the cancer is, how big it is, and how much it affects the organs or tissues.
If a cancer has spread, signs or symptoms may appear in different parts of the body. A cancer may also cause symptoms like fever, extreme fatigue or weight loss. This may be because cancer cells use up much of the body’s energy supply, or they may release substances that change the way the body makes energy from food. Cancer can also cause the immune system to react in ways that produce these signs and symptoms, he added.
Dr Ejaz Shah thanked Jang Group and Novartis Pharma for organising a meaningful seminar. About more than 8 million people die due to cancer. This day is observed to create awareness about diagnosis and treatment of this disease. Patients of this disease are increasing day by day. Most of the patients do not go to hospitals for their treatment. They go for checkup at their last stage. This is just because they are not aware of their disease. We should use balanced diet, low fats and should avoid frozen and artificial food. We should avoid smoking. Awareness lectures should be delivered at school and college level. Media should also play role regarding this. Liver cancer is spreading rapidly in our country. To reduce its’ risks, Hepatitis B vaccine should be injected, he added.
Wasif Nagi said cancer is a deadly disease and awareness about this disease should be created. Treatment of this disease has been so expensive. Most of the patients die due to expensive treatment, he added and appreciated Novartis Pharma Pakistan Limited for creating spreading awareness about this deadly disease.
Dr Khalid said any disease can be treated through timely diagnosis. Cancer can be in any part of the body. We should avoid smoking because it causes mouth and lungs cancer. We can prevent from this disease if it is diagnosed at first stage, he said.
Dr Abbas Khokhar said cancer department at Mayo Hospital is one of pioneer departments of this disease. When a person suffers from cancer then his family suffers too. We should support such patients and should encourage them to fight with this disease, he added.
Rashid Noor thanked all the experts and audience from Novartis Pharma to join this awareness session.
Mudassar Abbas said Novartis Pharma is playing its’ prominent role in providing treatment facilities. Community should also play their part in this regard, he added.