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House plans legislation for regional cancer centers


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Nigeria

House plans legislation for regional cancer centers

By Bennie Iferi

 

The House of Representatives will back improved government measures, including new legislations, to boost a national response to cancer as demanded by medical experts, Deputy Speaker Emeka Ihedioha said on Thursday.

Amid mounting fears over rising cases of cancer in the country, experts have argued for a more determined government’s response to the condition, and have warned that the figures of those affected may double in the next few years.

The World Health Organisation says Nigeria records an average of 100,000 new cases of cancer every year, and experts estimate that by 2020, incidences of cancer for Nigerian males and females may rise to 90.7 and 100.9 cases per 100,000 persons respectively.

The West African division of the International Academy of Pathology said that cancer has now become endemic as many families in the country are facing challenges from the disease.

At a meeting with the deputy speaker on Thursday, a delegation from the organisation, led by Professor Femi Ogunbiyi, the President of the West African Division of the International Academy of Pathology, said some of the earliest efforts by the government should be the creation of regional centers for the treatment of the disease.

“We are proposing that government should get involved in the establishment of regional cancer centers which incorporates pre-cancer diagnostic laboratories,” he said.

Ogunbiyi urged the federal government to include cancer in the National Health Insurance Scheme in order to make it easier for the patients to access treatment at reasonable costs.

Ihedioha said the House of Representatives will support any effort made by the executive arm of government to curb the sickness and its growing presence in the country.

“I feel it is not too much for the country to have a cancer diagnostic centre in each zone of the country,” he said. “As an institution that represents the yearning of the Nigerian people, the House is interested in the welfare of the people.”

Ihedioha said the House will back bills proposed to help tackle the disease once they are presented to the National Assembly with the financial implications of securing at least one center for each of the six regions.

 

 

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Updated 7 Years ago
 

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