By Gabriel Chy Alonta
To reduce the rising cases of breast cancer, especially among women in Anambra and Nigeria, Eldorado Multi-Specialist Hospital, Awka, has launched a mammography machine to be used in detecting early cases of breast cancer to prevent occurrence.
The mammography machine, which makes use of light x-rays to check bumps and other signs of the breast cancer, is the only of such functional machines in the state, Orient Weekend reports.
Obiano, represented by the Executive Director, Anambra State Health Insurance Scheme, Dr. Simeon Onyemaechi, said the facility was in line with the policy of the state government, calling on other well meaning Anambrarians to borrow a leaf by investing more in health sector.
The governor called for more partnership and collaboration among private medical practitioners in the state in order to offer better services to the masses.
Speaking during the launch and breast cancer screening programme last Thursday, in Awka, the Anambra state capital, Dr. Brenda Nwamuo, who gave the overview of the breast cancer programme, regretted that Nigerians neglect early signs of the disease, while harping on the need to go for early screening.
Offering insights into the measures to prevent breast cancer, Dr. Nwamuo said that over 400,000 people die annually as a result of breast cancer, stressing that over one million new cases emerge annually.
She listed age, family history, gender, early menstruation and late menopause, as risk factors, encouraging people to live healthy lifestyle, engage in physical exercise, eat balanced diet as measures to reduce risk.
While stressing that high mortality rate is as a result of late presentation by patients, she advised women, who have reached the age of 40, to ensure they go for breast cancer screening, at least, once a year.
Earlier in an address, the Manager of Eldorado Multi-Specialist Hospital, Francisca Chinelo Isuh, said the exercise was borne out of the desire to reduce incidences of breast cancer in the state and country at large. She described the development as very bad.
She said the hospital is ready to meet the unmet health needs of members of the society, such as preventing higher rate of breast cancer disease, especially in women; adding that the machine would help screen women who have symptoms of cancer.
She assured that the services would be provided at an affordable rate to people, even as she added that the hospital and the Anambra State Health Insurance are working out modalities to subsidise the cost.
Highpoint of the event was the practical demonstration of breast cancer prevention awareness by Dr. Ifeoma Ajuba of Medical Women Association of Nigeria.