Nigeria requires about three hundred cancer treatment machines to effectively address the gaps in the treatment of the disease.
The President, of Nigeria Cancer society, Dr. Adamu Umar stated this at a press conference to mark world cancer day in Abuja.
Dr. Umar stressed the importance of the day which is to raise awareness on cancer for better access to treatment and urged governments at all levels to ensure equitable distribution of healthcare infrastructure, especially at the primary health care level to intensify preventive and regular screening service of cancer.
He also applauded the Federal government’s recent decision on 10 naira per liter exercise duty on carbonated and alcoholic drinks which he said are major causes of cancer.
A Pathologist with the University of Abuja Teaching Hospital, Dr. Bawa Abimiku who noted that about 60 percent of cancer cases are treatable, urged Nigerians to leave healthy lifestyles such as regular exercise, checkups, and desist from smoking to prevent the disease.
In a remark, the Executive Director, African Health Budget Network, Dr. Aminu Magashi, represented by the senior programme officer Dr. Obinna Onuoha, urged stakeholders in the sector to galvanize efforts in addressing Policies that promote harmful practices which lead to various types of cancers.
A Mental Health coach and President, Mandate Health Empowerment Initiative, Dr. Ameh Zion, said most cancer patients were battling mental health issues and called on the national assembly to pass the mental health bill to address the condition in the country.
He expressed dismay on the current law on mental health which seeks to put persons who exhibit mental illness on asylum without proper care.
Nigeria records over a hundred thousand cases of cancer each year with about 72,000 deaths.
The theme for this year’s world cancer day is ” close the care gap”.
Reporting by Emmanuel Kutara, editing by Daniel Adejo.