The First Lady, Rebecca Akufo-Addo joined over 40,000 people in the Eastern Regional capital Koforidua, for the 7th annual breast cancer awareness walk dubbed “Walk for the Cure.”
The event which was under the auspices of Breast Care International, is to highlight the dangers associated with the deadly breast cancer diseases and the need for women to seek early treatment to prevent them from falling victim to the disease.
Enthusiastic participants made up of the Eastern Regional Minister, government appointees, breast cancer survivors, their children, breast cancer ambassadors, staff of BCI, clergy, society organizations and residents held placards with inscriptions like “breast cancer is curable” and “breast cancer is survivable” to reinforce the theme of the month-long campaign: ”OUR BREASTS, LET’S CHECK THEM.”
It is estimated that every 69 seconds, someone dies from the breast cancer disease globally, and approximately 456,000 women die from the disease every year, while 2,062 women were diagnosed with breast cancer in Ghana last year alone.
Based on this backdrop, President of Breast Care International, Dr. Beatrice Wiafe Addai called for more awareness creation to save more lives.
She revealed that, in Ghana, breast cancer continues to occupy the first position in mortality and about 60% of our patients report to the hospitals with late-stage disease, making it difficult for a cure.
She underscored the need for early detection and prompt action since more than 50% of all our breast cancer patients are below the age of 50 years, making the disease a matter of public health concern as well.
“It was about time breast cancer was given the attention it deserved. As the number one killer of women Breast cancer statistics would remain a scar on our conscience, if we do not collectively fight the condition as a National disaster”, she stressed.
Dr. Waife Addai who is also the Chief Executive Officer of Peace and Love hospitals was happy the awareness creation is yielding positive results since the annual BCI Ghana Walk for the Cure has assumed a National character, attracting people from every strata of society.
“We are riding on this National acceptance to increase our visibility, and by extension, heighten and sustain awareness about this debilitating disease, which, but for our consistency, would have needlessly destroyed several precious lives and families” she added.
The choice of Koforidua, the cancer surgeon stressed is because, their walk coincided with “Akwantukese” festival of the people in the region, blending tradition with health.
Dr. Wiafe Addai paid glowing tribute to headline sponsor Delta Airlines, the Regional Minister, Multinational companies, corporate bodies, individuals and the media for their immeasurable and unflinching support, both financial and material.