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Marcelle Ruth Begins Three-year Awareness Campaign on Cancer Prevention, Treatment

todayFebruary 14, 2022

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Peter Uzoho

Barely one year after its inauguration in Lagos, Nigeria’s first world-class, one-stop cancer treatment outfit, Marcelle Ruth Cancer Centre & Specialist Hospital, has commenced a three-year advocacy campaign aimed at increasing people’s awareness on cancer prevention and cure and the need to support cancer patients.

At its Cancer Awareness Walk 2022, tagged: “Close the Care Gap,” which was carried out in some cities in Lagos, the promoters of the campaign in collaboration with volunteers stressed the need for more impact and care for cancer patients.

They also emphasised the need for concerted efforts to reverse the identified inequity in the accessibility of cancer treatments as well as increasing awareness on early detection through proper health screening.

The promoters of the cancer awareness walk equally intended to bridge the gap by demystifying the discussion around the disease while also strengthening private sector initiative and partnership with the public sector.

Speaking at the awareness walk, Chairman and Co-founder, Marcelle Ruth Cancer Center & Specialist Hospital, Dr. Bolaji Odunsi, encouraged people to always embark on routine medical checks for early detection and treatment of cancer.

Noting that cancer is a treatable disease, Odunsi said the disease could be dealt with if people take their annual checks serious, explaining that the walk was to increase people’s to follow up on their annual checks.

“It’s a treatable disease. It’s something that has occurred to most families and it’s something that can be dealt with if people take time out on an annual basis to have a check. It’s so much easier to treat and cure if you do that.

“And so, we are trying to increase people’s awareness that they should follow up on their annual checks. And for many that do have it, it’s not the end of the world, we are here to help”, he said.

On her part, the Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder, Marcelle Ruth Cancer Centre & Specialist Hospital, Dr. Modupe Elebute-Odunsi, said another message embedded in the awareness walk was to remove the stigma about cancer, advising cancer patients not to feel hopeless in life.

She also stressed the need for friends and families of cancer patients to render supports and care to their loved ones suffering the disease.

Elebute-Odunsi said: “The main message as well is to remove this stigma about cancer, to allow cancer patients to not be burdened down by feeling terrible, by feeling that there is something that they can’t share with their family and friends.

“Because those of us in the clinical setting understand that positivity and support from family and friends at this difficult time in their lives actually help to ensure that patients get better.”

She called for collaboration between the public and private sector in the treatment of cancer, saying, “the private sector can bring infrastructure. We can deliver themes, trainings. Even on a day-to-day basis, we are collaborating with the public sector to ensure that we deliver good healthcare.”

Also, Consultant, Family Physician, Dr. Babafemi Adenuga, said there was the need for people to be intentional in the prevention and treatment of cancer by establishing a relationship with a primary care physician.
“We’ve heard that adage: ‘prevention is better than cure’.

“I think what people need to do is, we need to be intentional. We need to be intentional in the sense that we need to make sure that we establish a relationship with a physician, a primary care physician so that we can do our routine screens, so that we can get all the health maintenance assessment that we need to get, and we can then now focus on prevention where you get the advice based on risk assessment that had been done for the patient,” he added.
Cancer is one of the world’s leading causes of death.

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), in 2021, the world crossed a disturbing new year threshold with an estimated 20 million diagnosed with cancer globally, and half of that figure killed by the disease.
The global health body said the numbers would continue to rise in the decades ahead.

However, in Nigeria, over 70,000 cancer death occur annually from over 115,000 annual diagnosis.
But despite the scary nature of the numbers, experts believe that cancer can be cured, hence the establishment of Marcelle Ruth Cancer Centre and Specificialist Hospital in April 2021 in Victoria Island, Lagos.
Reputed to be the first of its kind in Nigeria and West Africa, the centre provides world-class, one-stop services for comprehensive treatment of cancer and other special conditions.

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