Highlight non-communicable diseases – NGO urges media

The President of Breast Care International, BCI, Dr. (Mrs.) Beatrice Wiafe Addai, has urged the media to devote more airtime and print space to non-communicable diseases currently responsible for the top ten major causes of all mortality cases in the country.

The BCI President, who is also the CEO of the Peace and Love Hospitals, said highlighting the financial burden of diabetes, stroke and hypertension for instance would jolt policy makers into formulating more proactive programs to stem the increasing  wave, while creating awareness about the associated dangers for the unsuspecting public.

“The National Media Commission, and the National Communications Authority, regulators of the sector, the Ghana Journalists Association, and owners of private media houses should coordinate efforts to make this a reality. Our health is our wealth,” she reiterated.

Dr. Wiafe was speaking at the third in the series of the BCI-Delta Airlines sponsored free breast screening exercise at the Saint Bakhita Catholic Church, community twenty, Lashibi, on the spintex road, Accra.

Dr. Wiafe, who credited the media for accomplishing several national engagements, including helping stabilize the country’s democratic dispensation, said “it was about time the media shifted focus, and devoted more air time and print space to non-communicable diseases”, which she said “ had been a silent killer, needlessly claiming thousands of innocent productive lives.”

Turning to the Lashibi screening, Dr. Wiafe encouraged the women to periodically carry out their own breast self- examination, and report any abnormality to hospitals for further investigations and prompt treatment.

She commended the leadership of the Saint Bakhita catholic church for organizing the maiden health fair,  which was designed to bring healthcare to the doorstep of the faithful, and encouraged the congregation, especially those with suspicious cases, to resist the fear of stigmatization and step out for treatment.

The renowned breast surgeon counselled the women against attributing or linking breast cancer to demonic forces or any other superstitious belief, insisting that while causes of the disease remain unknown, risk factors, including poor dietary habits, alcohol intake, genetics and smoking among others, remain dangerous to the health of those with a family history of breast cancer.

Credit: BCI