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Inaccessibility to care, facilities contribute to low number of cancer survivors, says Oncologist


LAGOS – An Oncologist, Dr Omolola Salako, has attributed lack of access to cancer care, inadequate radiotherapy facilities and misdiagnosis as reasons for the poor record of cancer survivors in Nigeria.

Salako, who is also the Founder, Sebeccly Cancer Care, an NGO, spoke on Saturday in Lagos at an awareness campaign on breast cancer.

She said that the country did not have a good record of survivors because of many barriers such as inadequate access to cancer care, as many patients have to travel far to access care.

“Also, the radiotherapy facilities available may be faulty and not working or a diagnosis cannot be made.

“These are the things that cause delay in the detection and treatment of the disease, “ she said.

The oncologist said that there was the need to carry out more awareness campaign to encourage more women to regularly undergo screening for breast and cervical cancer.

According to her, early detection of the disease is key to survival.

“We need to educate more people on the need to detect cancer early so that we can have more people survive breast cancer in Nigeria.

“We want women to do self examination once in a month and women above 40 years old should have a mammogram once in a year,’’ Salako said.

Also speaking, the Project Coordinator of the campaign, Mrs Omotigho Ozor, said men had a major role to play in ensuring that women do their checks and also support them to undergo treatment

“The men are very important in supporting their wives, sisters, mothers and encouraging them to go for treatment.

“Sometimes, men have the dilemma of allowing their wives to go for treatment.

“Such men should not be selfish, but support the women in order for the women to be stable emotionally,’’ she said. (NAN)

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