Central Govt gives priority to Anti-Cancer Drive: Minister

The WHO South East Asia Regional Committee, in its 68th session held in Timor Leste, adopted resolution no. SEA/RC68/R5 on 11 September 2015, on “Cancer Prevention and Control – the way forward”.

The said resolution noted that many cancers are preventable, can be detected early and treated, which improves survival and quality of life. It urged the Member States, inter-alia, to develop/strengthen a comprehensive national cancer prevention and control programme, integrated within a broader multisectoral NCD action plan,

India has already prepared and adopted a National Action Plan and Monitoring Framework for Non Communicable Diseases including Cancer, in 2013 with 10 targets and 21 indicators.

Since adopting WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (FCTC), the Government of India launched National Tobacco Control program in 2007-08 with the aim to create awareness about the harmful effects of tobacco consumption, reduce the demand and supply of tobacco products, ensure effective implementation of the provisions under “The Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products (Prohibition of Advertisement and Regulation of Trade and Commerce, Production, Supply and Distribution) Act, 2003” (COTPA) and help people quit tobacco use through Tobacco Cessation Centres.

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Central Government supplements the efforts of the State Government for improving healthcare including prevention, diagnosis and treatment of Cancer. At present, National Programme for Prevention and Control of Cancer, Diabetes, Cardiovascular Diseases and Stroke (NPCDCS) being implemented under National Health Mission (NHM) for interventions upto the district level includes awareness generation for Cancer prevention, screening, early detection and referral to an appropriate level institution for treatment.

The focus is on three areas namely breast, cervical and oral Cancer. Screening guidelines have been provided to State Governments for implementation. Suspected cases are to be referred for confirmatory diagnosis by various tests including histo-pathological biopsy.

Government of India is also implementing a scheme for enhancing the tertiary care facilities for Cancer in the country. Under the said scheme, Government of India assists to set up/establish State Cancer Institutes (SCI) and Tertiary Care Cancer Centres (TCCC) in different parts of the country. The maximum assistance inclusive of State share for SCI is uptoRs. 120 crores and for TCCC is uptoRs. 45 crores.

The Minister for Health & Family Welfare, Shri J P Nadda stated this in a written reply in the Rajya Sabha here on Tuesday.

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