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20,000 Afghans suffer from cancer: official

20,000 Afghans suffer from cancer: official

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Feb 06, 2017 - 21:50

KANDAHAR (Pajhwok): Kandahar public healthinfo-icon officials on Monday said there were 20,000 people suffering from cancer in Afghanistaninfo-icon including 167 in the southern province.

Of the 167 suspected cancer patients in Kandahar, the disease has been diagnosed and found in 37 individuals. These views were expressed at a gathering marking Worldinfo-icon Cancer Day in Kandahar City, the capital of Kandahar province.

Provincial public health director Dr Abdul Rashid Alokozai and representatives from World Health Organization, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), UNICEF, Doctors With Borders and others were present at the gathering.

Alokozai read out a message from the public health minister and said the day was observed to create awareness about cancer among people.

He said 20,000 Afghans suffered from cancer and their mortality rate exceeded 15,000. He said most of the patients suffered from blood, stomach, chest, throat and prostate cancer and causes of these diseases included consumption of drugs, alcohol, unhygienic food and lack of exercise.

There is no facility in Kandahar province to diagnose and treat cancer.

Dr. Alokozai said the Ministry of Public Health had recently established a well-equipped cancer treatment centre at Jamhoriat hospital in central capital Kabulinfo-icon. Efforts to further equip the Kabul centre were underway, he said.

He said another cancer treatment centre having examination, X-ray, altrasound and mammography facilities had also been established at the Istiqlal hospital in Kabul.

He said the Public Health Ministry was planning to launch a survey to collect exact figures of cancer patients in big cities, including Kabul, Kandahar and Mazar-i-Sharif in order needed measures were taken to reduce deaths from the disease.

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