” Knowing All About CANCER and How CYTECARE Perceives Students as CHANGE MAKERS “

   ” Cancer is a perilous disease but the beauty of life after cancer is worth fighting for henceforth there’s a Can in Cancer because we Can beat it! “

On a cognizance afternoon of 28th June 2022 Department of Medical Radiotherapy of MVM College Of Allied Health Science, Yelahanka – Bengaluru had scheduled a fantabulous talk program upon ” Cancer Awareness and How CyteCare Perceives Students as Change Makers “. Nabila Mohammad Rafulla, AHS Teaching Faculty for Neuroscience Technology was the host of the program. A day without prayer is a day wasted, so a prayer for all the cancer fighters that, may their every cancerous cell be casted out and replaced with a good one and may they get empowered and complete healing, therefore an  invocation song was sung by our students of AHS BSc. MLT First Year Ms. Aarthi, Ms. Arpitha and Ms. Bhoomika.

” Cancer is a journey that is walked all alone. There are many places to stop along the way and get nourishment – it’s  just that they have to be willing to take it. So here we’re Ready To Take A Stance And Help Giving Hope For A Fighting Chance!”

Cancer awareness is the key to early detection and better health-seeking behaviour. Cancer is quite common in both developing as well as developed countries, but awareness is yet poor among the general population. Poor awareness may lead to poor uptake of screening modalities and delay in diagnosis. One factor that has been consistently shown to be associated with late diagnosis and treatment is a delay in seeking help for cancer-like symptoms.

Cancer is a global disease and is spreading rapidly. Healthcare systems across the world are facing stiff challenges to tackle this issue. This appears formidable when India’s 1.3 billion population, which is considered to, spread across 29 states and 8 union territories with varying degree of population genetics, environment, lifestyle, etc. lead to a heterogeneous distribution of disease burden. Lack of awareness contributes to the late reporting of cancer cases to the healthcare facility.

The importance of cancer awareness has been emphasized as a means of ensuring behavior that facilitates early detection, whereas the absence of cancer awareness has been seen as a detriment to this end. Delay in health-seeking is also attributed to factors such as illiteracy, financial constraints, as well as myths and superstitions along with lack of awareness and these go hand-in-hand, most of the time.

One common observation in most studies was the association of education with awareness level. Thus, if the cancer burden in terms of reduced mortality and morbidity is to be achieved, there has to be better awareness levels than what is prevalent and also improvement in education and also the level of cancer awareness was affected by the accessibility to a different source of information regarding cancer such as Television and Healthcare personnel were the major source of information as well. As cancer awareness is a vital component of the cancer control programme, careful consideration of the source of information may be useful to generate awareness.

So in conclusion, General awareness of cancer is poor among the Indian population; similarly, it is also poor for curability, preventability and screening methods. Therefore, education and place of residence (rural or urban) plays a vital role in cancer awareness. Whereas Awareness Generation Campaigns can be a better way to impart information to the communities. Community health education on cancer needs to be emphasized as well as proper utilization of mass media and the internet can be useful in creating awareness.

On that account MVM College of Allied Health Sciences had joined efforts with CyteCare Cancer Hospital, Bangalore. Here the word ‘CYTE’ is derived from the Greek word, ‘KYTOS’, which means cell and that’s why they represent care at a cellular level and have the vision to redefine cancer care since November, 2016. They’re deeply rooted in providing advanced cancer care treatment for patients coming from all over the world here in Bangalore, India. At CyteCare, they understand and stress on the right way of fighting cancer and promote a more profound recognition of individuals and their cancer treatment.

Mr.Amit , Mrs. Rekha and Mrs.Sridevi interacting with our Principal Prof. Sahana Muralikrishna

It’s believed and known that every cancer is different, and hence, a specialized cancer treatment is necessary for each. There are practitioners of researched cancer care methodologies, owing to which, their multidisciplinary team of cancer specialists are strongly guided by national as well as global protocols such as National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN), European Society for Medical Oncology (ESMO), National Health Service (NHS), Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and Tata Memorial Hospital. Their attributes like multi-facility infrastructure, cancer treatment facilities and leading cancer surgery specialists makes them a top cancer hospital in Bangalore.

So we had our venerated Guest of Honour Mr. Amit Sharma, who is currently working as CIO at CyteCare Cancer Hospital. He has more than 22 years of work experience in Indian and Global Life sciences, Healthcare and Organisations. Sir has done Post Graduation in Pharmacology from KMC Manipal and MBA in Strategy from MDI Gurgaon. In the year 2017, sir was awarded by UK Foreign Ministry, the prestigious Chevening Fellowship in Leadership and Management from University of Oxford. As of now Mr. Amit is currently engaged with a team of passionate professionals who are working towards providing world class cancer care to Indian patients. And sir is also involved in multiple initiatives with NGOs and Educational institutions in areas such as Awareness and providing treatment funding support including seeking funds from CSR initiatives of organizations for such causes.

Likewise we had Mrs. Rekha Shivkumar who is working with CyteCare Cancer Hospital as Head Patient Experience. Ma’am holds Post Graduation in MA English with 20 years of Healthcare experience. She’s a people’s person and highly passionate about her work, hence enjoys connecting with people to provide the best possible care to the patients who come to CyteCare Hospital. Ma’am is also involved in creating Cancer Awareness by connecting with Community and Educational institutions.

And let me not overlook to put in a good word towards Mrs. Sridevi S. Ma’am has received her Bachelors in Engineering and Post Graduate Diploma in Counseling Skills. She has achieved wide exposure of associating with various institutions like Spandana, NIMHANS, Baptist Hospital, Association of Physical Disability, So care Mahila Daksha Samithi, Solidarity Foundation. And has been actively conducting Personality Development Workshops for Rural Government Schools and other Private Institutions. Presently ma’am is providing Individual Counseling for Navodaya Institution, MVM Group of Institutions, and CyteCare Cancer Hospital. Ma’am’s personal counsel are of diverse backgrounds like Echelons of the Business World, Elderly, People with relationship difficulties and Students.

Each of our esteemed guests of honour were admired by Prof. Sahana Muralikrishnan (AHS Principal) and Mrs. Chaitra K. R. (HOD, Professor AHS).

Felicitation of our Guests of Honour

Subsequently, Mr. Amit Kumar got going with the Awareness on Cancer with what Cancer is defined as, different types, etiology, myths, treatment and management and patient care and safety. Mr. Amit Kumar also highlights the cancer disease across the country to reduce the risk of cancer and to provide knowledge on how to tackle this disease, and what are the probable symptoms should not be neglected. Mr. Amit describes that a new case of cancer is diagnosed every second. This means that, since he started addressing himself to us, one new case may already have been diagnosed. By the end of his talk of the day, there could be more. Beyond this, cancer also has a tremendous financial impact. It places a massive burden on our health and social systems and we need to turn this alarming trend around. We must strive for more. And we must do so together, all hands on deck. A cancer diagnosis does not only affect the patient, it also affects families, friends, everyone near the patient is caught up in this tsunami. This diagnosis is the source of many feelings and emotions of sadness, anxiety, anger, denial, even helplessness. Cancer concerns all of us, in one way or another. It does not distinguish between religions or race, gender or age, and that is why we all need to join forces, to make a difference, especially if one looks at the stark numbers looming in the future which suggest cancer cases will double in the upcoming years ahead. We cannot be just bystanders with no control over our lives or our health. As youths, medical professionals, patients’ advocates, and industry, we have enormous capacity for change.

Furthermore, Mrs. Rekha Shivkumar had shared her experiences she faces day to day at CyteCare Cancer Hospital as being the Head Patient Experience personnel , that patients journey with cancer began when diagnosed. Later, they tackled cancer both as a patient and as a warrior. She ensures that better cancer prevention, treatment and care becomes a health priority. Of course, people dealing with cancer – patients and their families, doctors and nurses, staff and herself – face this disease every minute, not just a particular month or so. But Cancer Awareness is an opportunity to shine light on cancer, and keep it high on the public agenda. It also allows us to shed light on the challenges and often invisible realities of living with this disease. So Mrs. Rekha wants to thank all those involved in the motto Transforming Cancer Together initiative for the invaluable work they do. 2020 has been a challenging year for us all. But she says that it has been particularly difficult for cancer patients and their families. The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted cancer treatment, delayed screening, and affected access to medicines. It has added a new layer of risk for patients, and created more worry and stress for families. But she wanted to assure us all that cancer remains a top priority for this Motto – and we are working hard to overcome the challenges posed by COVID-19. Thankfully, patients are beginning to return for appointments – and this is absolutely crucial. We need to encourage individuals to attend their appointments, to have the check-up or treatment. And she also urges people to continue seeking advice and screening in order to detect cancer at the earliest stage possible. This is the best chance to beat cancer – and we need to take every chance we can get.

Also we had inspirational perfunctory talk by Mrs. Sridevi S, in her perspective of a counselor she had said that caring for a person with cancer can be hard emotionally and physically. However, there can also be moments that are comforting and rewarding. Depending on the needs of the person with cancer, you may provide different types of support, including: Emotional support, Help with medical care, Serving as the communicator between the patient and other health care teams. Students in future careers are members of an important team of family members, friends, volunteers, and the health care team. Each member of the team offers different skills and strengths to provide effective care. If you are the main member, help each team member express concerns, opinions, and emotions. Also, make sure that the person with cancer has a central role in all discussions and decisions, if possible. Take charge and plan as much as possible to prevent last-minute emergencies. This can also help provide a sense of control and order. Identify problems, find out what is needed, and follow through. Do not be afraid to take advice and help from other health care team. Look for creative solutions that work for you and the patient. Having a positive attitude can help set the tone for all that you do. You may not have control of what happens to you, but you can change how you react. Recognize your own strengths and weaknesses as a caregiver. This allows you to set boundaries and know when to ask for help.

We were highly inspired by the selflessness of their talk on Cancer Awareness and as well as upon making Change Masters in the Field of Cancer Care. This is the kind of  power that drives the mission towards Transforming Cancer Together and procuring our eminent Radiotherapy Technologists as Change Masters in the field of Cancer Care and there’s never a doubt that there’s a difference made in the fight against cancer. We would like to thank all the guests of honour Mr. Amit Kumar, Mrs. Rekha Shivkumar and Mrs. Sridevi S., at this juncture  for various help we received towards this Awareness program, and  blessed us with their presence, words are not enough to thank their erudite guidance and support to shape this program.

 

Report by ,

Ms. Nabila Mohammad Rafulla

Tutor , MVM COLLEGE OF ALLIED HEALTH SCIENCES

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