Important to bring breast cancer awareness to rural areas — Fatimah
Posted on September 30, 2012, Sunday
KUCHING: Increasing breast cancer awareness in rural areas is vital due to the tendency for villagers to choose traditional treatment over modern medicine.
Minister of Welfare, Women and Family Development Datuk Fatimah Abdullah yesterday urged cancer support groups to organise more activities on cancer awareness in rural areas.
“Cancer support groups are encouraged to share information on cancer, in particular breast cancer with their counterparts in rural areas because some of them prefer traditional treatment.
“It is important to share life saving information on early detection so that they know where and how to seek treatment,” she said at the flagging off the ‘Cure Charity Ride’ to Sri Aman by Sarawak Breast Cancer Support Group (SBCSG) and Sarawak Big Bikers Club.
She added that women here are still quite conservative when it comes to breast cancer.
“Most patients tend to isolate themselves from friends and family and even the public because they feel quite embarrassed to be diagnosed with breast cancer and hence refuse treatment.
“Some might even have the perception that both chemotherapy and radiotherapy would worsen the cancer and they tend to seek traditional treatment for cure,” she said.
The minister expressed hope that positive attitude from SBCSG members will enlighten others to adopt the same positive attitude.
The event yesterday involved 10 big bikers shuttling SBCSG members to Sri Aman to promote breast cancer awareness through health talks, demonstrations and exhibitions.
Among the objectives of the event is to educate women on the importance of self-examination, provide moral support to breast cancer patients and their love ones and to promote SBCSG to breast cancer survivors so that they can continue their charity work.
SBCSG is located at Lorong Maxwell 2, Kuching.
The building is named ‘Matahari’ and it provides resources and a helpline especially for women newly diagnosed with breast cancer.
SBCSG has 289 registered members consisting of 212 cancer survivors and 77 caregivers.