The Director of the Kumasi Center for Collaborative Research (KCCR), Prof. Richard Phillips, has said a lot more needs to be done to completely eliminate breast and prostate cancers, in the country, in spite of the success recorded so far in the fight against the two major killer diseases.
He observed the country has come far in its efforts to stop breast and prostate cancers but “it is not enough yet.” He added that the disease has not been conquered completely.
It against this bacground that he said with more facilities distributed across the country, “we should be able to meet the need that is in the communities with respect to breast and prostate cancer.”
Dr. Phillips, who was speaking in an interview during a presentation of GH₵30,000 from the AngloGold Ashanti – Obuasi Mine to KCCR, therefore, recognized that such support from corporate bodies deepens the capacity of KCCR to test and detect such cancers at the onset.
“For all this research you need a lot of molecular facilities, for early detection and confirmation. This calls for investment in the equipment among others, to be able to provide testing when it is needed. And so, this contribution will go towards that,” he stated.
Data available shows that, globally, cancer is likely to be ranked as the leading cause of death among non-communicable diseases in the 21st century, with cancer of the breast already being the most common cancer in both developing and developed countries.
The disease is said to be responsible for over one million in an estimated ten million neoplasms diagnosed in both sexes worldwide. It was listed as the primary cause of cancer death among women globally, responsible for about 425,000 deaths in 2010.
In Ghana, according to health researchers, breast cancer is a major public health problem and the most common type of cancer among women in terms of mortality and incidence.
The Human Resource Superintendent – Staffing and Line Support, of AngloGold Ashanti – Obuasi Mine, Hilda Arhin, said losing a love one to breast cancer is hard to bear, and therefore the Mine started the initiative last year to support the fight against the disease.
She said among other things, AGA embarked on a breast cancer awareness campaign as well as an intensive breast screening exercise within various communities of the Obuasi Municipality, last year.
However, she noted that due to the incidence of COVID-19, this year, AGA adopted some innovative approach to reach out to communities as well as committing to raise funds, from employees and contractors to support KCCR, a major health research institution.
AGA, therefore, was able to mobilise and present a cheque of GH₵,30, 000 to KCCR, to deepen its research and capacity towards addressing breast cancer and prostate cancer.
Hilda Arhin was confident that the assistance given to KCCR will go a long way to help their operations particularly in terms of testing and detecting breast cancer at the onset as well as its treatment of people living with prostate cancer and breast cancer.
She also entreated the public to periodically go for medical checkup since early detection will help to save more lives.
“AGA is committed through its Sustainable Development Strategy, to continually contribute to the health and wellbeing of the people of Obuasi. This commitment is clearly spelt out in the Mine’s Social Management Plan to help diversify the economy of Obuasi through a share value approach.”
The donation to the KCCR, therefore, affirms the Mine’s commitment to partner with stakeholders to promote good health and education for its host communities and the nation in a safe mining environment.
Hilda Arhin, presenting the cheque donation of GH₵30,000 to Prof. Phillips of KCCR