The Ministry of Health and Prevention has launched the annual national campaign for early detection of breast and cervical cancers which will take place until November 2, 2017. This year’s initiative was rolled out in conjunction with the 21st anniversary of the National Program for Early Examination of Breast Cancer launched in 1996.
The campaign aims to raise awareness; educate and provide information on the importance of early detection of breast and cervical cancers; highlight prevention methods and risk factors; underscore the significance of early detection, diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation; and identify local health centers and hospitals that provide diagnosis and treatment for all women citizens and residents.
H.E. Dr. Hussein Abdel Rahman Al Rand, Assistant Undersecretary for Health Clinics and Centers, said that the Ministry has expanded the scope of the campaign this year to include early detection of cervical cancer. Initially, it only covered breast cancer. The move was aligned with the Ministry’s strategy to strengthen its preventive and awareness-raising methods to protect local society from diseases. The national campaign falls within the framework of ’Itmenan’ designed to implement the two initiatives adopted by the Council of Ministers, namely the ‘Universal Periodic Examination’ and ‘Early Detection of Cancer.’
H.E. Dr. Al Rand said that the campaign also seeks to enhance the skills of the medical staff in catching breast and cervical cancers at the earliest stage by providing them with accurate information and scientific developments concerning these two types of cancers and relevant early screening tools. The campaign also aims to build partnerships and cooperation between all government and non-government entities in support of the Ministry's efforts to combat breast cancer.
He emphasized the importance of continuous communication with the target groups by using all available means and platforms, including the media, lectures, and leaflet and pamphlet distributions in health centers, hospitals, women’s clubs, schools and universities, shopping malls, and government institutions. This will encourage women to visit early breast cancer screening centers across the UAE.
Dr. Esmat Al Qassim, Head of Early Detection of Cancer Initiative, said the campaign includes breast screening in mammogram screening centers and mobile mammography units and cervical cancer screening in all primary healthcare centers. It also features activities and educational programs for women such as a video presentation on the importance of screening, the dissemination of relevant publications, and increased awareness on the significance of early examination in Ministry-run primary healthcare centers, shopping malls, and some government bodies.
A workshop and training of radiology technicians will be held with experts from Sweden from October 22 to 27, 2017 at the Family Health Promotion Center in Sharjah. Another workshop will take place in cooperation with experts from the IAEA from November 5 to 9, 2017 to update the National Guidelines to Early Detection of Breast Cancer.