By Mercy Osajiugo
Minna – Raise Foundation, an NGO, says it provided free cervical and breast cancer screening to 617 females at the Kure Ultra Modern Market in Minna, Niger.
The Centre Manager of the foundation, Ms Maureen Chawa, disclosed this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Saturday in Minna.
Chawa said that the number of women that turned up for the three-day screening was encouraging.
“We screened 381 females for breast cancer, 16 had lumps in their breast while all the 236 screened for cervical cancer had a negative result of Visual Inspection with Acetic Acid (VIA),” she said.
Chawa said that the turnout was relatively impressive but that she expected more women to take advantage of the free exercise.
“I was expecting a good turnout because it was a free exercise, but the reverse was the case as many of them were busy in selling and buying in the market.
“In spite of the fact that the exercise was brought down to the Primary Healthcare Centre in the market place they remained busy with their trade,” she said.
She explained that the beneficiaries that came for the screening were in the age range of 16 to 70 years.
Chawa advised women to pay more attention to their health before any other thing.
“I had expected that all the women traders who spend all their time in the market would have taken advantage of the exercise and avail themselves that free exercise.”
She explained that it was only when one has a good health that all opportunities can be maximally explored, adding that early detection of the ailment saves life and brings the situation under control.
Hajia Hadiza Yusuf, a Matron with the foundation, called on women from puberty to adulthood to take advantage of breast cancer screening.
“Cervical testing should not be undermined as early detection will help nip cancer in the bud.
“It is safer, cheaper if it is dictated early but if it is already advanced we cannot treat it here,” she said.
She said that those that had lumps would be booked for surgery by the foundation.
She however referred those that could not be screened to locate them at their centre in Minna for the screening.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the exercise was the pet project of the Wife of Niger governor, Dr Amina Bello. (NAN)