Dated: 16th March 2020

Venue: Khyber Medical University Peshawar

Chief Guest: Deputy Speaker KP Assembly

Guest of Honour: Ms Rabia Basri (Standing Committee Chairperson) & MPA Sajida Hanif (member steering committee Breast Cancer)

Audience: Faculty & students of KMU

Breast Cancer is slowly becoming an endemic in Pakistan with one out of eight women being at a lifetime risk of developing the disease at some point. Factors like taboos, stigmas, stereotypes, myths and misconceptions surround women’s health and their bodies posing hurdles in early presentation of the cases in tertiary care hospitals. In order to spread awareness regarding the disease, shed light on its causes and prevention, an awareness session was organized by PHA KP in collaboration with KMU. Many notable guest speakers including the President of PHA, Vice Chancellor KMU, Parliamentarians, staff and more than 200 University Students participated in the event with great zeal and interest.

The session, moderated by Dr. Brekhna, started with the recitation of Holy Quran. Renowned doctor and keynote speaker of the day, Dr. Safoora Shahid, delivered an insightful lecture on the various causes of the diseases, its management and the importance of readily available treatment facilities. “Early detection can save lives”, said the famous oncologist. Ph.D. Scholar of the University and Histo-Pathologist, Dr. Mahvish furthered the discussion by talking about the specific genetic cancer markers.

The session was also attended by various Parliamentarians, including the Chairperson of the Standing Committee for Health, Ms. Rabia Basri and Ms. Sajida Hanif. Mehmood Jan (Deputy Speaker KP Assembly) who was the Chief Guest at Khyber Medical University Peshawar, gave directives to the relevant policy makers to follow up the PC1 of the first ever “Breast Cancer Early Detection” program in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa with federal government to ensure smooth approval during 2022. He said that treatment of Breast Cancer is free at IRNUM on Sehat Sahulat Program. He said that early detection of the Breast Cancer will save the lives of many women in future and KP Assembly supports this cause wholeheartedly.

Ms. Rabia Basri (Standing Committee Chairperson Health) emphasized on the importance of self-examination and other preventive measures of Breast Cancer. Ms. Sajida Hanif (member Breast Cancer steering committee KP) ensured the support of policy makers for the establishment of early detection centres and Breast Cancer Control Program in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

Dr. Zia ul Haq (VC KMU) said that Mrs. President has raised this issue to the top level and KMU is a strong supporter of this cause. Dr. Safoora Shahid (leading Oncologist) gave a detailed briefing on prevention of Breast Cancer. Dr. Saima Abid (President PHA) discussed the details of the activities PHA did to highlight this issue at all levels and the struggle so far. She concluded the session with presenting her report about the various projects executed so far to expedite the efforts in improving breast cancer research as well as, shared details about the inception of breast cancer committee in process.Later the guests planted the olive trees through support of the Forest Dept.

Concluding Remarks:
In his concluding remarks Dr. Zia, Vice Chancellor KMU thanked all the participants. Souvenirs were distributed among the guests. The event was closed with a collective pledge by the participants with the aim to play individual role in overcoming the stigmas surrounding the disease and passing on the information among others for helping at community level. He appreciated the university’s efforts in the fight against the disease and assured their full support for the future endeavours.

Out come:
• More than 200 University Students participated in the event
• Parliamentarians and especially the Chairperson Stading Committee ensure their full support
• Individual efforts will be ensured to address the cause
• University Students will also play their due to role in spreading awareness among the communities
• All the stakeholder will be made onboard regaling the issue.
• Awareness campaigns like walks will be organized
• More than 300 participants were briefed and awared.

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