Bhubaneswar: Ever since the inception of World Cancer Day at the World Summit against Cancer for the New Millennium in Paris in 2000, the day marks its 20th anniversary, Tuesday.
Over the last two decades, individuals and organisations across the world have contributed to the global collaboration to promote research, prevent cancer, improve patient services, raise awareness and mobilise the global community to curb the dreaded disease.
Nearly 9.6 million people succumb to cancer in the world every year, making the disease the second-leading cause of deaths worldwide. Around 70 per cent of these occur in low-to-middle income countries due to low penetration of awareness, infrastructure, technical and medical expertise, limited access to quality care, funding for research, and sometimes, even lack of political will. The national registry pegged India’s cancer-related deaths in 2018 at 0.7 million, the actual figures being much larger.
As the world rallies to make 2020 the year to ignite action, accelerate the reduction of unnecessary cancer deaths and achieve equal access to cancer care for all, the Vedanta Group is determined to contribute its share of labour and funding through Balco Medical Centre, the flagship initiative of Vedanta’s philanthropic outfit, the Vedanta Medical Research Foundation (VMRF).
Initially aimed at catering to Chhattisgarh and nearby states, the Balco Medical Centre has emerged as one of the biggest cancer hospitals in central India and gained tremendous popularity as a sought-after treatment centre in India. Till date, this 170-bed ultra-modern, multi-modality diagnostic and therapeutic facility hospital in Raipur, Chhattisgarh, has treated a cumulative patient count of 6,500 and received 25,000+ OPD footfalls since receiving its first patient in 2018.
According to Balco Medical Centre’s chairperson Jyoti Agarwal, “Vedanta Group with its considerable CSR footprint has always closely aligned all its CSR activities with national priorities. In the space of health care, Balco Medical Centre that Vedanta has set up at Naya Raipur is contributing to prevention, control and eradication of cancer. The centre runs various screening campaigns at various places, among every strata of society, to promote early detection of cancer.”
Balco Medical Centre has brought modern, comprehensive and quality cancer care within the reach of population of Chhattisgarh in particular and Central India in general. The hospital is a huge step forward in addressing India’s huge demand-supply gap vis-à-vis cancer treatment.