Samina Arif Alvi, the wife of President of Pakistan Dr Arif Alvi, on Thursday called on the people to create awareness about breast cancer as its mortality rate could be controlled if people had knowledge of it.
She was addressing an event held at the Governor House in connection with the ‘Breast Cancer Awareness’ campaign. She said female-specific diseases like breast cancer could be controlled through awareness. It is not a religious issue but a medical problem, she said, adding that the disease can be cured through proper treatment for which awareness is the first and basic step.
She also highlighted the alarming death rate due to breast cancer in Pakistan and asked both the public and private sectors to play their due role in creating awareness about the disease. She urged both the women and men not to feel shame in talking about such kinds of diseases with their family members. She said the Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre and other health facilities provided free treatment to the patients of breast cancer.
Mazar turns pink
The mausoleum of the Quaid-e-Azam was illuminated on Thursday night with pink light as part of the breast cancer awareness campaign. A ceremony was also held at the mausoleum in which Samina participated as the guest of honour.
“The importance of Pink Ribbon campaign is that if breast cancer is diagnosed at an early stage, there are more than 90% chances of full survival,” she said and advised all the women of Pakistan above 40 years to have a mammography once a year to make breast cancer a disease of the past.
Today’s pink illumination in Pakistan’s biggest city is an international symbol of hope against eradication of breast cancer and we support this global initiative, Samina said. She acknowledged efforts of the Pink Ribbon Pakistan in spearheading awareness on breast cancer and advised them to visit rural areas of the country as well.
She encouraged private hospitals to be part of the global initiative against breast cancer. Pakistan has the highest incidence of breast cancer in Asia, with every one in nine Pakistani women at risk.