A consultant Surgeon and professor of surgery at the University of Ghana Medical School, Professor Joe Nat Clegg-Lamptey, has urged various stakeholders in the health sector to intensify education on breast cancer.
Speaking on Thursday, October 8, 2020, at the launch of the Breast Cancer Awareness Month at the University of Ghana Medical Center in Accra, Professor Clegg-Lamptey emphasized on some reasons why Ghana’s case count was on the rise.
According to the Ministry of Health (MOH), breast cancer occurs mostly in women and sometimes in men. In addition, there are about 1.7 million new cases globally while 522,000 deaths from breast cancer are recorded each year.
These alarming numbers have necessitated the promotion of comprehensive breast cancer control programs across various countries by the World Health Organization (W.H.O) and various health agencies.
Most women (70%) diagnosed with breast cancer in Ghana are in advances stages of the disease due to low awareness which results in high death rate.
In the engagement with the media and medical trainers and dignitaries, Professor Clegg-Lamptey urged all stakeholders and health personnel to help with the awareness creation and intensify education on breast cancer.
“The education on breast cancer seems to be working but, for some reasons, people do not tend to visit the hospitals when the early signs of cancer show up. We as professionals must ask ourselves, ‘Is everything okay?’ Why are people especially the women not coming to us? It means that we must intensify our education and put structures in place to help solve the problem.’’
“There are also some things we can do with education; we all have roles to play as individuals. We must educate ourselves by learning the basics. That is; self-breast examination and visiting the hospitals at age forty to examine ourselves,” he added.
He further stressed the need for government to support with funds as Ghana joins the rest of the world in the creation of awareness this month.
Meanwhile, the Chief Executive Officer of the University of Ghana Medical Centre, Darius Osei, encouraged family and friends to support breast cancer patients to enable them to go through positive and safe treatment as the centre provides specialised care to them.