An NGO, Mass Medical Mission, on Tuesday launched the Health Education On The Go (HETGo), a community mobilisation campaign to make qualitative preventive cancer care accessible to all Nigerians.
Dr Abia Nzelu, the Executive Secretary of the organisations, told newsmen in Lagos that the HETGo was aimed at expanding the impacts of the various free life-saving initiatives of the medical mission.
“The initiative is to make qualitative preventive cancer care accessible to all Nigerians, cancer has become a global epidemic which increases daily.
“But, the survival rate is increasing in developed countries compared to developing countries like Nigeria due to lack of infrastructure.
“However, we currently have infrastructure in Nigeria where people can have access to free quality screening for the prevention of cancer.
“That is why we are here today to launch the Health Education On The Go, which involves the deployment of a fleet of special branded buses designed to combine provision of health education with public transportation.
“The aim is to create mass awareness so that members of the general public can take maximum advantage of all aspects of this noble programme.
“Currently, we have five buses that will be deployed to different areas across the state.
“There will be videos and Jiggles that will be playing and telling people about different health conditions and what they can do to prevent them,’’ she said.
According to her, ignorance is the major contributor to mortality rate from cancer and other killer diseases which account for Nigeria currently having the seventh lowest life expectancy in the world.
“Cancer and its related risk factors are the major causes of untimely death in Nigeria and the global cancer burden has risen to 18.1 million new cases and 9.6 million cancer deaths in 2018.
“To address this problem, our organisation marked the last World Cancer Day by deploying four of the pilot set of Mobile Cancer Centre also known as “PinkCruise” to take holistic preventive healthcare to Nigerians.
“The Pink Cruise is equipped with state-of-the-art facilities for screening and treatment including mammography, endoscopy, colonoscopy, colposcopy, vaccination and surgeries for pre-cancer and early cancer.
“The PinkCruise operates from fixed Based Cancer Centres (BCC) that are equipped for follow up and treatment cases as well as screening for those who did not participate in the community-based health mission.
“So, we want Nigerians to take advantage of this programme, the mobile cancer center is available to all and free,’’ Nzelu said.