Cancer is currently estimated to be the cause of one in every ten deaths in PNG. But this insidious disease is not yet fully understood and treatment options are limited.
The effort in combating this disease is a collaborative approach and requires the support of all affected parties.
To help with the fight, the PNG Cancer Foundation was launched yesterday in Port Moresby.
The PNG Cancer Foundation board combines the expertise of the country’s most respected doctors, researchers, business heads and stakeholders.
It is also a recognized member of the Union of International Cancer Control. The Foundation targets enhancement in PNG’s cancer services and awareness by educating people on effective actions of prevention.
Deputy Chairlady of the Foundation, Dr Lynda Sirigoi, shed some light on the basic objective behind their activities.
“Recent research by the PNGIMR suggests that around 10% of all deaths in Papua New Guinea are due to cancer and that cervical, mouth and liver cancer are the biggest killers.
This is preliminary data but it suggests the need for more research to better understand the burden of cancer in PNG and to help us develop the most effective and locally-appropriate cancer prevention and care strategies.”
This responsibility falls in line with the cancer care policy that the Health Department is currently and prudently piecing together to form an efficient implementation of cancer treatment in PNG.
The PNG Cancer Foundation includes prominent ambassadors such as Linda Babao, wife of PM Peter O’Neill, and PNG-born rugby union star Will Genia. It has also gained the support of the American Embassy.
The Foundation will begin with an education campaign to help people identify and understand common cancers that are preventable, followed by numerous programs, activities and events, throughout 2014.
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