Cancer is not beyond us. That is the theme of World Cancer Day 2015, which falls on February 4. It’s not just a theme–it’s true. High quality cancer care is not beyond us, especially in northern Tanzania, where preventive measures and improved early detection could improve patient outcomes and save thousands of lives.
“Why is World Cancer Day important?” That’s like the other question we get a lot: “Why should I support cancer care in a faraway country when my own home has so many problems?” We like this answer:
Put simply, because the global cancer epidemic is huge and is set to rise. Currently, 8.2 million people die from cancer worldwide every year, out of which, 4 million people die prematurely (aged 30 to 69 years). Urgent action needs to be taken to raise awareness about the disease and to develop practical strategies to address the cancer burden. Disparities between people from different settings are growing, particularly in the access to prevention, treatment and palliative care.
Disparities don’t have to continue to grow in northern Tanzania. With your help and the help of our partners across Tanzania, we can transform cancer care for thousands. It all starts with the construction of the Cancer Care Institute in Moshi this summer. Stay tuned for more.
In the meantime, see how you can help in the global fight at worldcancerday.org.