Kathmandu, February 4
World Cancer Day was marked across the country with various awareness programmes today. Marking the day with the theme ‘I am and I will’, cycle rallies, discussion on prevention, early detection and treatment of cancer took place in all 77 districts.
World Cancer Day is marked on 4th of February every year to increase awareness of cancer, and to encourage its prevention, early detection and treatment.
According to government data, every year more than 19,000 people die due to cancer in the country. Every year nearly 26,000 new cancer patients are diagnosed in which more than 15,000 are women and nearly 10,000 are men. Five years of record shows that there are 43,816 cancer patients who were cured and are living healthy life now. Every hour, two people die due to cancer.
Meanwhile, the estimated number of deaths due to cancer in 2018 was 9.5 million, which amounts to a whopping 26,000 deaths a day, according to World Health Organisation.
According to oncologist Dr Prabhu Prasad Shah, the number is expected to rise due to various factors such as air pollution, unhealthy lifestyle and eating habits. He said, “One of the many causes of cancer among people was consumption of unhygienic food.”
“Eating processed and smoked meats, packaged foods containing hidden sugars, sodas, alcohol, tobacco, frozen food, junk food and so on are the reasons behind cancer among the people these days,” he said.
According to Lokendra Shrestha, director of Bhaktapur Cancer Hospital, avoiding tobacco and smoking habits can halve the number of cancer patients in the hospital. He said, “Government should implement Tobacco-related Product (Control and Regulation) Act effectively which limits selling and buying of tobacco products. It will also decrease the burden of cancer and treatment to be provided to people.
A version of this article appears in print on February 05, 2019 of The Himalayan Times.