The first lady Her Excellency Rebecca Akufo-Addo has accepted the role as Cancer ambassador from Cancer Voices Ghana, a registered charity raising awareness of cancers in the country.
Cancer Voices Ghana paid a courtesy call on her to discuss the cancer situation in the country and the way forward in addressing the situation.
According to the leader of the delegation, Dr. Raphael Nyarkotey Obu who is the president of the group was more than happy to see a special policy in the government Manifesto on cancers and the charity is more than ready to help the government to implement this policy.
The group according to Dr. Raphael Nyarkotey Obu represents the voice of people from across the country that has all been affected by cancer in some way. They share their experiences to help shape cancer services and improve cancer care. “We represent the Ghanaian who is suffering from cancer, We achieve our values, vision and purpose by building relationships with: Hospital advisory group, Local and central government, Community organizations, Private organizations, People affected by Cancers, taking part in a research focus group or workshop , acts as funding agencies to all cancer groups and provide awareness and screening program” he said.
Dr. Nyarkotey Obu on behalf of the group presented a proposal to the first lady on what needs to be done as part of campaign promises of recognizing cancers as national challenge.
Dr. Raphael Nyarkotey Obu, president of Cancer Voices GH and president of Men’s Health Foundation-Ghana, said it was imperative for government to commit to cancer care because cancer differs by race; hence there is the need for cancer to be addressed accordingly.
The cause of the deadly cancer disease is yet to be established, but Dr. Nyarkotey explained that no single thing can cause cancer, adding cancers are a spectrum of diseases.
As a research Professor of Prostate Cancer and Holistic Medicine at Da Vinci College of Holistic Medicine, Larnaca city, Cyprus, Dr. Nyarkotey said he has realized that cancer is often misunderstood, by even the most respected medical professionals in the world.
This, he attributes to the believe that people get cancer like the same way they would catch cold or bacterial infection, stressing: “But in reality, every cell has the ability to be cancerous, and a variety of factors can prompt a cell to do so. And while most Oncologists (and even leading cancer associations) consider cancer a genetic disease, we realized that this is not entirely true.
Cancer is not an equal opportunity disease and we believe that unless we tackle the primary prevention of cancer, i.e. stopping cancer before it starts, we are unlikely to see any improvement in the cancer situation in Ghana.
The first lady was more than happy to accept the role from the charity to lead the campaign agenda of recognizing cancers as national challenge and help frontier the cancer campaign in the country. She officially endorsed the charity after the group presented the cancer ambassadorial shirts to her.
Dr. Nyarkotey made a number of interventions to address the cancer situation in the country proposing some months to be recognized as cancer awareness day, establishing national cancer foundation and others in the proposal.
She has promised to make available a Mobile Van for the initiative.
Cancer Voices Ghana
Kobby Blay is the chief health editor at Ghanahealthnest.com. A professional practicing nurse with specialty in mental health and focus for health communications, public health, medical/documentary photography, ICT and systems perspective for health improvement.