· This programme called Ganga Godavari Cancer Screening Programme by AstraZeneca India aims to spread awareness, and facilitate early detection of Oral, Breast and Cervical Cancers at early stages among women
Varanasi, India: The Banaras Hindu University (BHU) and Indian Cancer Society (ICS) today signed an MoU for conducting a cancer screening programme to facilitate early detection. The initiative called ‘Ganga Godavari Cancer Screening Programme’ by AstraZeneca India, intends to create awareness, and detect oral, breast and cervical cancers at early stages among women at specialized cancer screening camps. Doctors For You is the implementing partner for this programme in Varanasi.
The current phase of this program, starting today, will be initiated in Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh in consensus with NHM and the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare( MoHFW). The Department of Community Medicine at the Institute of Medical Sciences, BHU will act as a nodal agency for this program. The Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, General Surgery and Dentistry will provide an expert team of medical professionals for provision of screening services at the Health and Wellness centre at Tikri. ICS would act as executing agency and will supervise and ensure effective implementation of this programme at the ground level.
The first phase of this programme was implemented in Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu, and Karnataka,Till now more than 76 camps has been conducted under Ganga Godavari Programme and around 4,000 plus beneficiaries have been registered. All the positive cases have been referred to partner teritiary care hospitals for further treatment.
While commenting on this,Mr.Gagandeep Singh, Managing Director, AstraZeneca Indiasaid, “We’re making our science accessible by designing and delivering life-changing healthcare programmes tailored to the needs of the communities that we serve. The Ganga Godavari Programme has already touched the lives of more than 4,200 people and resulted in the early identification of 150 patients that were reffered to tertiary care hospitals for further management.”
Dr.Sangeeta Kansal, IMS, Banaras Hindu University, Department of Community Medicine, said,“We are proud to partner with Banaras Hindu University and Indian Cancer Society in allignement with the MoHFW, to support the specialized cancer-screening for women from underprivileged families in Uttar Pradesh. This will support awareness building and early identification of patients in the defined area.
Colonel Khadar, DDG, Indian Cancer Society said, “Cancer is one of the leading causes of mortality among adults in India. Programs like the Ganga Godavari, that are driven across the country will go a long way in supporting India’s fight against cancer.
The prevalence of cancer in India is estimated to be 3.9 million people with reported incidence of 1.1 million in 2015. This is however a conservative number, as the real incidence of cancer for women is estimated at 1 to 1.4million according to the report ‘Expanding Cancer Care for Women in India’, released by EY in association with FICCI Flo in 2017.This challenge of high incidence is further compounded by the unfortunate situation of late detection and low awareness among the general population and even paramedic professionals.
Realising the benefits of early screening, Government of India launched an operational framework for the country’s first national cancer screening program in November 2016. Under this, there will be mandatory screening for oral, breast, and cervical cancer in women over the age of 30. The Ganga Godavari programme aims to supplement the Government of India’s initiative of Ayushman Bharat Health and Wellness Centre program of early screening and diagnosis of cancer patients. The ICS Helpline number is 1800-22-1951 for any information associated with cancer.