World Cancer Day - Get Involved to Make a Change

World Cancer Day - Get Involved to Make a Change

Dr. Lakshmi Venkataraman
Article Reviewed by The Medindia Medical Review Team on February 2, 2019 at 5:49 PM
Health Watch
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Highlights:
  • World Cancer Day is observed on the 4th February annually across the world and hopes to increase cancer awareness, cancer prevention, early diagnosis and treatment, and supports cancer research
  • Cancer is the second leading cause of mortality in the world and it is estimated that about 9.6 million persons died due to cancer globally in 2018
  • Cancer can be prevented and cured if detected early. It is important for all of us to stand together and get involved in the global fight against cancer
World Cancer Day was established in 2000 during the World Summit against Cancer for the New Millennium held at Paris.
World Cancer Day - Get Involved to Make a Change

The World Cancer Day is the brainchild of the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC), the oldest international cancer organization and comprises over 1,000 member organizations from more than 160 countries, and represents the important cancer societies, patient groups and health ministries across the world.

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Primary Goals of World Cancer Day and Theme for 2019

  • Integrate cancer prevention into world health and development programs
  • Education of the general public about early diagnosis and cure of cancer
  • Improve health care and make available affordable treatment to one and all
  • Promotion of cancer research
  • Calling upon the global community to join in the fight against cancer and spread awareness
The campaign theme for World Cancer Day 2019 is "I Am And I Will". The theme has been launched in 2019 and will continue for three years i.e 2019-2021. The three-year campaign is to increase the intensity and impact of the campaign to inspire and involve as many people as possible to get involved personally and sustain the tempo even after the passage of the World Cancer Day 2019.

What We Can Do To Raise Cancer Awareness

Cancer has touched all our lives one way or the other either directly or indirectly. It is time for each and every one of us to contribute our mite to educate and empower the population and raise awareness about cancer prevention, diagnosis and treatments. Some of the ways we could do so include:
  • Use social media such as Facebook and Twitter to post and share messages and campaign posters. Create your own custom poster with inspiring messages and share widely in the social media
  • Share your story of the fight against cancer on social media to inspire and encourage cancer patients across the world
  • Wear the theme colors of blue and orange to show your solidarity to World Cancer Day. Light up your building or an important landmark in the community in the theme colors with cancer-related messages
  • Make your personal contribution or raise funds for the cancer charity and cancer research. Organize a marathon or sports event or a fun-filled gala event to raise cancer awareness and donate the proceeds to charity
  • Organize a tea event in your community and involve cancer survivors to share their story and experience and inspire and raise awareness about cancer prevention and cure
  • Enlist the help of local television channels, radio, and print media to bring out messages and write-ups about cancer awareness and call experts to discuss the topic to eliminate myths and educate the general population about cancer
  • Hospitals and clinics can offer free cancer screening check-ups to encourage more people to seek medical help and benefit from early diagnosis
  • Local administration and government must ensure affordable and quality treatment to one and all irrespective of socioeconomic status, caste or gender

Key Cancer Facts

  • Cancer is the second leading cause of death globally with an estimated 9.6 million deaths in 2018
  • Behavioral and lifestyle changes can prevent at least a third of cancers
  • Cancer is curable. Early diagnosis is key to cure cancer
  • The most common cancer-related deaths occurred due to lung, colorectal, stomach, liver and breast cancer
  • The single most important risk factor is tobacco accounting for 22% of deaths across the world
  • A Majority (70%) of deaths occur in low and middle-income countries due to lack of awareness, lack of infrastructure and shortage and lack of access to health care services

How to Prevent Cancer

  • Quit smoking (the leading cause of cancer) and avoid alcohol use
  • Engage in regular physical activity
  • Eat a healthy diet and include plenty of fruits and vegetables
  • Maintain a healthy body weight since obesity increases cancer risk
  • Avoid promiscuity and multiple sexual partners
  • Avoid/reduce occupational exposure to cancer-causing chemicals such as asbestos or benzene
  • Avoid unnecessary x-rays and scans that expose you to radiation
  • Reduce stress through meditation and practicing relaxation techniques

Summary

Show your support and solidarity to World Cancer Day (4th February) and educate and empower more people about cancer awareness, prevention and cure.

References :
  1. About World Cancer Day - (https://www.worldcancerday.org/key-issues)
  2. More Information About World Cancer Day- 4th February - (https://www.uicc.org/what-we-do/convening/world-cancer-day)


Source: Medindia

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