The surge in incidences of cancer within the Madi sub-region has ignited concerns among local leaders and experts in public health, underscoring the pressing necessity of addressing this escalating health predicament.
Cancer, characterized by the aberrant and unbridled proliferation of body cells, manifests in diverse forms — some leading to the formation of lumps or swelling, while others, such as leukemia, involve an excessive generation of abnormal blood cells, as elucidated by the Uganda Cancer Institute.
Within the Madi sub-region, spanning Moyo, Obongi, and Adjumani districts, more than 400 new cases of cancer have been documented in the current financial year, signifying a disconcerting trend compounded by delayed diagnoses, according to medical records.
Vick Opia, a specialist in palliative care based in Adjumani, expressed apprehension regarding the steep escalation in new cancer cases, surging from 56 to 203 within a brief period.
Opia underscored the imperative for heightened awareness campaigns by leaders to mitigate this
Dr. William Anzo, an Obstetrician gynecologist at Moyo General Hospital, emphasized the institution’s consistent registration of at least two new cancer cases weekly, accentuating the severity of the situation.
“Every week at the hospital, we receive at least two new cases of cancer, which is a substantial number,” remarked Dr. Anzo.
Titus Jogo, the refugee desk officer in Adjumani, stressed the significance of both refugees and members of the host community adopting preventive measures against cancer.
Jogo highlighted that a substantial proportion of new cancer cases in the district are among refugees.
Meanwhile, Richard Akuku, President of the Rotary Club of Adjumani, disclosed the commencement of the Madi cancer run aimed at raising awareness, advocating prevention, and fostering early detection among local communities — a proactive strategy in combatting the disease.
In Uganda, an estimated 33,000 individuals are diagnosed with cancer annually, with only around 7,400 accessing care, as reported by the Uganda Cancer Institute in September 2022.
This underscores the critical imperative for heightened awareness, early detection, and improved access to care to confront this pervasive health challenge.