SVG joins international fight against breast cancer
Breast Cancer is the second most common cancer globally and with this in mind, the St Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG) Medical Association remains committed to building awareness and providing support to those affected.
This was reiterated last Friday when the Medical Association held their annual Breast Cancer Awareness Pink Cap City Walk and Rally. The walk is held every October, Breast Cancer Awareness month.
The rally culminated at Heritage Square, where president of the Medical Association Dr Rosalind E Ambrose pledged the organization’s commitment to persons who have breast cancer.
She said the walk is part of their quest to keep the focus on breast cancer as it is a very serious disease which affects many persons around the world and right here.
“The Medical Association remains committed to continue to build awareness and provide support to those undergoing one of the most difficult circumstances in anyone’s life. In the past year, the Medical Association has helped some 11 patients, and six of these were new cases,” Ambrose told the gathering.
She said breast cancer accounted for 1.7 million new diagnoses in the year 2012 and this represents a 20 per cent increase in the figures of 2008.
“An even greater concern is the fact that breast cancer has become the leading cause of death amongst women around the world. These figures continue to grow and each
year the numbers are increasing particularly in low and middle income countries like SVG,” Ambrose informed the gathering.
She said that in middle-income countries, where the majority of cases are diagnosed at late stages, and where supporting services are limited and very costly, the survival rates are the lowest.
“These are the reasons which inspire our organisation and others around the world to press on, and fight on, and continue to walk, and continue to run, and continue to hope and continue to pray for a cure,” Ambrose said while adding that we must continue to help persons.
The experienced medical practitioner said breast cancer and prostate cancer have many misconceptions, many myths, and misunderstandings, about the disease, the causes, and about who gets it and therefore, many women, and men, come forward at a very late stage, when the chances of survival are very poor.
“We wish to encourage all women over the age of 35 to practise breast self-examination, all men over the age of 40 to have medical checks for prostate disease,” pleaded Ambrose.
She noted that research also shows that there is a greater need for patient support, and organisations such as SCORCH, the Soroptimists International and the Medical Association are assisting.
The rally saw entertainment provided by panists Rodney Small and Jomoro Francis, violinist Milan Compton and dancers from the La Gracia Dance Company among others.