Ghana yesterday joined the global awareness campaign on cancer, with the message for every person to make a difference in the fight against cancer.
February 4 has been set as the World Cancer Day in response to the chapter of Paris adopted at the World Summit Against Cancer for the New Millennium in 2000.
First Lady Lordina Mahama, in a statement to mark the day, entreated women to pay more attention to their health by visiting the hospital for regular check-up and get a smear test to reduce the risk of developing hard-to-spot cervical cancer.
“Early detection leads to early treatment,” she pointed out.
According to her, cancer is a leading cause of death, but when detected early it is managed and prevented from getting to the advanced stage media to fight cancer.
The First Lady also advised men to be interested in the health of their wives by helping them to examine their breasts.
The African Cancer Organisation (ACO) in commemorating the World Cancer Day dubbed: ‘We Can, I Can’, has also held a cancer prevention sensitisation programme to educate the Ghanaian public on the disease.
Executive Director of ACO, Paul Opoku-Agyeman, said the goal of the programme was to sensitise Ghanaians about cancer prevention, pledge leaders to promote cancer prevention especially at their respective workplaces and also act as change agents in the society.
“We believe when leadership has a grasp of the message, it is easier for our folks down there to receive it and change their perception towards cancer and then lead a lifestyle that prevents cancer,” he said.
He added that although much remains to be learned about cancer, enough is now known about the causes of cancer and means of control for suitable intervention to have a significant impact.
“The knowledge, the tools and the technologies required to fight and defeat cancer are all available. What is needed now is the system to effectively and efficiently translate the present knowledge into action -and that is what ACO is doing,” Mr Opoku-Agyeman stated.
By Jamila Akweley Okertchiri