Health Minister Surjit Kumar Jyani on Friday launched a cancer awareness drive in the district at the civil hospital on the eve of the Cancer Awareness Day.
Jyani said the Punjab government had sanctioned Rs 215.50 crore to various empanelled hospitals in the state where 18,185 patients are undergoing treatment.
Presiding over the function to spread cancer awareness in the district, the health minister said the state government is committed to make Punjab a cancer-free state in the coming years since the disease is affecting the people’s health.
Chief parliamentary secretary (health) Navjot Kaur Sidhu, who was also present on the occasion, said, “The need of the hour is to make people aware about this deadly disease. It could be treated well if diagnosed at early stages. It is also both the responsibility and duty of people to stay away from tobacco, liquor and other harmful toxins which can lead to cancer.”
If someone finds that she is suffering from recurrent tumor she should immediately visit the nearest health centre and seek immediate medical assistance, said Navjot Kaur. She also raised the issue of burning of stubble by farmers which in turn leads to cancer.
The civil hospital has collaborated with a cancer specialist team from the Tata Memorial Cancer Hospital, Mumbai. A team of 14 expert doctors started screening cancer patients Friday onwards. Around four suspected cases of cancer were diagnosed till afternoon and were referred for advanced diagnosis.
T Anbumani of Tata Memorial Cancer Hospital, who is administering the screening project here, said the suspected cancer patients will be sent for advanced diagnosis and if the disease is confirmed they will be referred to empanelled hospitals for treatment.
He added that the state-of-the-art cancer facility being built in Sangrur in collaboration with the Tata Memorial Cancer Hospital will be functional soon.
Within two to three months the facility will be fully functional, he added.
Experts urged the farmers to keep in control the use of fertilisers, pesticides and other chemicals as they are harmful to human health.
People should also keep away from quacks besides avoiding delay in treatment of cancer, they said.
Principal secretary health Vinni Mahajan and Hussan Lal, managing director, Punjab Health Systems Corporation, were also present on the occasion.