5 min read
Updated on Nov 09, 2022
Cancer, a deadly disease with hardly a permanent, fool-proof cure so far. It has been known to take the lives of millions in the world, with India being no exception to the rule. Such is the nature of this fatal disease. As much as we would pray that our nation remains safe and sound from the grips of this fatality, it cannot be denied that cancer does affect people in large numbers in India every single year. The National Cancer Awareness Day is a small but powerful initiative in the direction of generating awareness among Indians about the dire need for early diagnosis and prevention of cancer.
November 7 is observed every year as the National Cancer Awareness Day in India. The reason for this is simple. While it’s nearly impossible to fight this disease once it has tightened its grip over our bodies, it can still be prevented through early medical intervention. This is why there is an urgent need in the nation to generate widespread awareness among its citizens against the causes, methods of treatment, and the consequences of this deadly disease we call cancer.
Every year on November 7, National Cancer Awareness Day is observed. This year too, this day will be observed around the nation to keep up with the trend. The National Cancer Awareness Day theme 2022 is to increase awareness among the people of the country about this deadly disease as well as to acquaint them with the various ways in which cancer can be prevented, diagnosed and treated to save lives.
November 7 has been observed as National Cancer Awareness Day in the country for the last 8 years now. It was first initiated by Dr. Harsh Vardhan, the Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare in India, in September 2014. Ever since, every year on November 7, the country observes this day towards raising awareness about cancer.
As far as the history of this date goes, November 7 has been carefully selected because it is also the birth anniversary of Madame Curie, the scientist who discovered radium and polonium, leading to the invention of radiotherapy for cancer treatment. Her work in radioactivity fetched her two Nobel Prizes in the year 1911.
In 1975, the National Cancer Control Programme was launched in India which announced the opening of facilities directed at the treatment of cancer in the country. These facilities were equipped with the right techniques to detect cancer at early stages.
We already learned above that November 7 has been chosen as the day when the entire nation observes the National Cancer Awareness Day in an attempt to generate and raise more awareness about the fatal disease.
In 2018, India reported a whopping 3,17,928 death cases in men and women both on account of the heavy use of tobacco, both smoked and oral (without smoke). Tobacco is a toxic substance which is believed to be the leading cause of cancer in a number of people all over the world. Since then, approximately 1.1 million new cancer cases are reported in the country every single year, some owing to tobacco use, while others account for other forms of cancer, such as cervical cancer in women, oral cavity and lung cancer in men, and breast cancer in women again.
Hence, Dr. Harsh Vardhan is of the opinion that an early diagnosis of this disease can pave the way for its treatment at a lower cost than what would need to be spent on treating it when diagnosed later (at advanced stages). Besides the cost factor, the mortality rate among both men and women due to cancer would also be lower if more people visited screening centers at a time when the earliest symptoms are observed.
The 2022 National Cancer Awareness Day is therefore directed at raising awareness among the maximum number of people in India, encouraging them to report for early symptom screening, thereby preventing and successfully treating the disease at early stages.
We’ve been discussing a lot about the history and significance of National Cancer Awareness Day. However, what exactly are we supposed to do on this day? How is the day observed across the nation? Let us see how we can play our bit on this important day:
National Cancer Awareness Day is observed every year to encourage more people in India to get tested for early symptoms and receive timely medical intervention that can help with the treatment and even save lives. The treatment for cancer is generally prolonged and highly expensive owing to the cost involved in chemotherapy and the like. This is why it helps to buy health insurance to safeguard your life savings being washed away in the treatment of such a disease.
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