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‘need to introduce cancer into the school curriculum to create awareness’ | Varanasi News

Varanasi: Apart from observing World Cancer Day (February 4) to raise awareness about cancer and encourage its prevention, detection and treatment, there is also a need to introduce cancer into the school curriculum, said the Chief from the radiotherapy department. and Radiation Medicine, Institute of Medical Sciences, Banaras Hindu University, Professor Sunil Choudhary.
The mantra of ‘prevention is better than cure’ can be seriously promoted through regular awareness programmes, he said, adding that ‘Catch them young’ by introducing a chapter or two on cancer into the school curriculum can prove extremely beneficial.
Professor Choudhary said the rising incidence of cancer worldwide should be a matter of concern for every country and its government. In the near future, at least one member of every family will likely suffer from this non-communicable but deadly disease. It brutally attacks the sick as well as their family members and causes physical, mental, social and financial setbacks. Western countries are better able to manage this threat through better health facilities and universal health insurance and well-planned government prevention and screening programs.
“On this World Cancer Day, we need to look inward and try to uncover the pitfalls of our healthcare system,” he said, adding that cancer screening in high-risk groups is known to lead to early detection of cancer. Therefore, the cancer screening program should be made mandatory by the government.
One of the most important approaches is to create and strengthen medical facilities for cancer care. He said the World Health Organization recommends at least one teletherapy unit per million people, which means that India should have at least 1,400 teletherapy units against the 762 units available, mostly in metropolitan cities and private hospitals. To improve the scenario, every district should have a medical school with a comprehensive cancer center with state-of-the-art facilities for the diagnosis and treatment of all types of cancer, Professor Choudhary said.
The government should improve facilities at existing cancer centers, he said, adding that each state should have an Apex cancer center with state-of-the-art facilities for cancer management, research, training and conduct facilities. multi-institutional clinical trials. Each institute should have academic programs to generate well trained cancer specialists. Tumor councils should be constituted in each cancer ward to provide the best evidence-based treatment.
According to Professor Choudhary, government aid must reach all those in need without delaying the treatment of illnesses.
Hospice palliative care centers should be part of every comprehensive cancer center to provide the best supportive care for terminal cancer patients, he added, while government policy on supply and use of opioids like morphine should be relaxed to make the topic accessible. The issue of euthanasia, the intentional practice of ending life to relieve pain and suffering, should be reconsidered by the government as it is still illegal in India.
He said. the radiotherapy and radiotherapy department of BHU has a linear accelerator, two telecobalt units, HDR brachytherapy and a conventional X-ray simulator and it lacks a CT simulator and a high-end linear accelerator with image-guided radiotherapy, stereotactic radiosurgery and stereotactic radiotherapy facilities. “The proposal to that effect has been sent to the higher authority. The department also proposed to start two new courses to meet the demand for the best human resources,” he said.
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