CAN urges people to prioritise cancer screening

By Rosalia David

THE Cancer Association of Namibia’s (CAN) chief executive officer, Rolf Hansen, has urged all Namibians to prioritise their health, including by going for regular cancer screenings.

Speaking to Confidente, Hansen said Namibians need to become more active and aware of the effects of cancer and visit health facilities.

“People only realize they need help when a patient is diagnosed with the disease, that’s the only time they come to us and that’s wrong. We must become proactive and aware. If you see a lump or a bruise that is not healing, go see a doctor or visit a clinic. If the minister of health and its team cannot assist you, go see a private doctor or come to CAN and let us take hands to fight this disease in our country.”

He further noted that there is still a great stigma attached to cancer, due to ignorance in community.

Recently, CAN received N$2.5 million from Bank Windhoek’s annual Cancer Apple Project and will use the funds for a great course in 2020, especially in its outreach programmes and Patient Financial Assistance Programme.

Speaking at the handover, Bank Windhoek executive marketing officer Jacquiline Pack said: “As the number of Namibians diagnosed with cancer increases every year, it stands to reason that funding to organisations, such as the Cancer Association, needs to be both continuous and consistent. Funds raised through the project last year have been allocated to the Patient Financial Assistance Programme and paediatric cancer patient care.”

In addition, continued emphasis will be placed on screening women for HPV, the virus that causes cervical cancer. The bank further regards the Outreach Programme as a critical exercise and commends CAN for going into the most remote communities to do the vital work throughout the years, she said.

“This kind of relentless action is an extension of our vision at Bank Windhoek, which is to invest in communities in which we operate.” Despite challenging economic conditions, the Cancer Apple Project has positively impacted the lives of many Namibians and, as noted, this year contributed N$2.5 million to the Cancer Association of Namibia.