Mazar-i-Quaid glows pink

AS part of ongoing Pink Ribbon’s annual breast cancer awareness drive, the mausoleum of founding father Quaid-iAzam Muhammad Ali Jinnah was illuminated pink on Saturday to express solidarity with the breast cancer patients and survivors. The awareness drive against breast cancer is launched every year in October and several activities are organised to raise greater awareness about this silent killer. Turning historic structures to pink including that of Quaid’s mausoleum is meant to attract attention of the public at large about this sensitive issue and nudge policy makers to take up this issue as a priority area.
Breast cancer is the most common cancer in women all around the world. Statistically Pakistan has the highest rate of breast cancer patients in whole of Asia. One in every nine women in Pakistan is at high risk of becoming a victim of breast cancer in her lifespan. However, this is the only cancer if diagnosed early, the survival rate increases to more than ninety percent. It is a matter of great satisfaction that due to Pink Ribbon Foundation’s work over the years, awareness about the disease has risen significantly and a demand for breast cancer services had emerged. It plans to launch country’s first dedicated breast cancer hospital, yet another historic step which needs to be supported at all levels. However, more efforts are required to raise the awareness about this silent killer especially in our rural areas. One of the most effective ways to educate rural women about this disease and help them with self-examination is through lady health workers. Secondly, as cable TV has made its entry in the rural areas as well, there is need to broadcast more programmes on breast cancer to help raise awareness and breaking social stigmas attached with the disease.

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