Building on the previous success of education and awareness initiatives, Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC) is taking part in the promotion of Breast Cancer Awareness Month and launching a nationwide ‘Early Detection Saves Lives’ campaign. This initiative aims to educate women at risk of breast cancer, increasing their knowledge of the signs and symptoms and empowering them to take charge of their own breast health.
Speaking about the campaign, Dr. Salha Bujassoum Al Bader, Senior Consultant at the National Center for Cancer Care and Research (NCCCR), and Director of the Breast Cancer Program at HMC said: "Breast cancer is by far the most common cancer in Qatar and one in eight women will develop breast cancer in their lifetime. As such, education, prevention and diagnostic services remain at the frontline of the battle against breast cancer.”
Dr. Bujassoum added: 'Breast changes can show up on mammograms before the patient or doctor can feel a lump. We therefore encourage women aged 45 and above to be screened appropriately for breast cancer, to stay physically active and eat a healthy diet. Our breast cancer team members are happy to participate in Breast Cancer Awareness Month because we strongly believe early detection can save lives”.
The campaign features a number of activities including a press conference held in conjunction with Primary Health Care Corporation (PHCC) and Qatar Cancer Society (QCS). The conference is being held on 29 and 30 October 2016 at the Sheraton Grand Hotel, Doha. It will bring leaders and healthcare professionals from around the world together to share their knowledge and expertise on breast cancer screening and the latest information about mammograms and early detection.
There will also be information booths in some of HMC’s hospitals including Al Wakra Hospital, Hamad General Hospital, The Cuban Hospital and the National Center for Cancer Care and Research. This initiative aims to inform patients and their families, visitors and staff about the signs and symptoms of breast cancer and educate them about the importance of prevention and early detection in reducing the risk of breast cancer and saving lives.
A celebration event for the breast cancer team at HMC, also known as the ‘Pink Team’ is also planned to take place on the 31 October 2016 at Bayt Al Dhiyafa at Hamad Bin Khalifa Medical City to acknowledge the team’s efforts, reward teamwork, and recognize their contribution to HMC’s delivery of high quality care to patients..
Along with these activities, a social media campaign will kick off during the first week of October and run throughout the month to engage with the public by sharing information about breast cancer and providing support to those affected by the disease.
Ms. Catherine Gillespie, Assistant Executive Director of Nursing at NCCCR said: ’’It is a great opportunity for us to collaborate with our partners to raise awareness and promote breast health. Over the years, HMC has been in the forefront of supporting and promoting breast cancer issues. Today, we are committed to continue improving the provision of the best care and support of women and men diagnosed with breast cancer. Together we can make a huge difference to patients’ lives.”
Other activities organized for Breast Cancer Awareness Month include educational lectures, a workshop and a networking gathering with private companies and other governmental organizations.
For more information about the ‘Early Detection Makes a Difference’ campaign, please follow HMC on Twitter: @HMC_Qatar and Instagram @HMC_Qatar.