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Kenyans Urged to Go for Cancer Screening

Late diagnosis has been identified as the major setback in the fight against cancer in Kenya

According to Priscilla Mwai, a breast cancer survivor, early diagnosis is crucial as it enables timely detection and treatment.

Mwai, who spoke at the Kajiado County Referral Hospital ahead of the World Cancer Day, called on all Kenyans to go for regular cancer screening to save lives.

“Early detection can save lives. I want to urge all Kenyans to go for regular cancer screening because treatment is possible when the disease is discovered at an early stage,” she said reiterated.

Mwai called on women to ensure that they get screened annually, adding that they bear the greatest burden when it comes to cancer, as breast and cervical cancer are on the rise. She further encouraged men to get tested for prostate cancer.

Monica Wairimu, another cancer survivor, echoed Mwai’s sentiments, emphasizing that cancer is treatable when detected early.

Wairimu revealed that through early diagnosis, she managed to beat cervical cancer and encouraged all women of reproductive age to get screened for cervical cancer.

She further called on girls aged 10–14 years to ensure that they receive the Human papillomavaccine (HPV) to protect themselves from cervical cancer.

World Cancer Day observed annually on February 4, is a global initiative aimed at raising awareness about cancer and promoting early detection, prevention, and treatment.

It advocates for improved access to healthcare services for cancer patients and provides an opportunity for individuals, organizations, and governments worldwide to unite in the fight against cancer.

According to the National Cancer Registry data 2021/2022, Kenya records 47,887 new cancer cases annually with 232,500 cancer deaths reported yearly.

The five most common cancers in Kenya are breast, cervical, prostate, esophageal, and non-Hodgkin lymphoma.

Two out of three people diagnosed with cancer succumb to the disease as 70 percent of cases are diagnosed in the advanced stages, when cure is impossible.

Only about 23 percent of all cancer patients in Kenya have access to the cancer management services they need and early diagnostic services are limited.

By Rop Janet

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