Kohima, February 2: Nagaland having the highest cases of nasopharyngeal cancer will get Tertiary Cancer Centre by this yearend in Kohima while the first medical institute in the State would be operation within two years time.
This was announced by Principal Secretary of Health & Family Welfare Nagaland, I Himato Zhimomi during the two-day 14th annual conference of the Association of Oncologist, North East India (AONEI) which commenced here today.
Stating that Nagaland is leading in Nasopharyngeal cancer patients in North East and the world too, he said according to national cancer registry data, India has 15.4 lakhs new cancer patients every year and out of that around 6-7 lakhs are fatal where 33% in first stages and 66% in second or last stages.
He said due importance would be given to oncology section once the medical institutes start functioning. In this regard, he urged expert guidance of AONEI members to be successful.
Zhimomi informed about Prime Minister Jan Arogya Yojana (PM-JAY) scheme where the cancer patients or other diseases would benefit up to Rs 5 lakhs who are under below poverty line (BPL). He said having such benefit scheme from the government should disseminate and reach out to all districts and every person through awareness programme and camps.
Zhimomi also released the AONEI souvenir and newsletter.
Organizing committee chairman, Dr. Thorhusie Katiry while stating that of the detected cases of nasopharyngeal cancer in Nagaland, 15.3% are males and 10.8% females, he expressed hope that the conference will serve as a catalyst for strengthening the transfer of scientific knowledge and improve standard of oncology practice in the northeast to arrest prevailing trends.
He challenged the gathering to join hands together to screen ourselves to get right treatment, right cost, right place and right rehabilitation.
Former chief secretary of Nagaland Banuo Z. Jamir in her special speech as a cancer survivor herself said she had undergone treatment for stage 2 cancer in 2001. She said in the past, because little was known about the disease an inevitable fatality was associated with cancer – it was referred to in whispers, shrouded in mystery and surrounded with myths created out of fear and dread.
She opined that treatment of the cancer patients, particularly for the BPL category should be subsidized in all authorized hospitals and state government should consider making treatment free.
She suggested to the gathering as part of the collaborative works, consider devising innovative ways to simplify the process of treatment to reduce cost and partnerships between hospitals in the NER so that patient treatment can be shared.
Jamir suggested to the hosts of oncologists in the conference that to introduce counselling for cancer patients and families and create a channel for disseminating information about various treatment regimes and facilities for treatment, subsidize the cost to the BPL category, facilitate chemotherapy in as many hospitals in the districts, associate survivors in designing programs in cancer activities and to introduce training in palliative care.
The programme commenced with Senior Pastor of CBCMHK, Rev. Wepre Mero pronouncing the prayer while keynote address was delivered by President AONEI Dr. A.K. Kalita while vote of thanks was proposed by Organizing Secretary AONEI Dr. V. Khamo. (Page News Service)