By: Sana Samad
In last few decades, cancer has become one of the deadliest diseases, continuously killing thousands of people yearly worldwide. The International Agency of Research estimated that more than 41 million new cases of cancer have been reported with 8.2 million deaths in 2012. The disease is growing and in 2030, the deaths rates could reach to 13 million.
Cancer is caused by tobacco, infectious organism, unhealthy diet and many more. The researchers have estimated that around 148,000 cases were emerged in Pakistan in 2012 and in 2014, Pakistan recorded the highest number of deaths rate of breast cancer in Asia.
Unfortunately, cancer is also spreading in Balochistan where there are no quality facilities for the treatment of cancer. According to the Health Department of Balochistan more than 35,000 patients are under treatment in the cancer unit of Balochistan Medical College (BMC). But most of the cancer patients visit Agha Khan University Hospital Karachi which is considered one of the most expensive hospitals in the country. Though Balochistan is full of natural resources, it is the poorest province of the country, so they cannot afford expensive treatment which they are often recommended.
Last year, a young boy named Rehan Rind from Khuzdar lost his life in Agha Khan University Hospital Karachi. Rehan was suffering from cancer but he could not afford further the treatment. The entire Baloch nation started denoting funds for his treatment yet what he received was not enough for his costly treatment.
It hurts me to mention that the young journalist (Editor of Balochistan Point) Yousaf Ajab Baloch young sister suffered from the same disease and like other she failed to survive.
These cases are enough to prove that death toll caused by cancer is rising but there is no good facility available in Balochistan for the treatment of cancer. And poor cannot afford to treat themselves in other provinces where the treatment is very expensive.
Several campaigns were launched to push government toward concrete steps of establishing a Cancer Hospital in Balochistan. And recently, the Chief Minister of Balochistan Nawab Sanaullah Zehri announced for the establishment of cancer hospital in Balochistan. Chief minister also mentioned that humanity is precious and Abdul Sattar Edhi just spent his entire life for the sole cause of humanity.
Establishment of cancer hospital in Balochistan might take some time but before that the provincial health department should launch awareness campaigns in all district headquarters hospitals of the province about the disease and its prevention. It is also the responsibility of the government to support affected individuals financially throughout the course of their treatment.
Published in The Balochistan Point on July 1, 2017