Chandigarh, February 6-   Punjab Chief Minister Mr Parkash Singh Badal has asked the Health and Family Welfare department to make concerted efforts for making Punjab a cancer-free state by providing free proper treatment to the people detected with symptoms of this fatal disease in recently concluded statewide door to door survey.

Interacting with the Health and Family Welfare Minister Mr Madan Mohan Mittal and top brass of the department after they submitted survey report “Statewide door-to-door campaign Cancer awareness and symptom based early detection” to him on Tuesday late evening, the Chief Minister reiterated the firm commitment of SAD-BJP government to eradicate cancer from the state. Mr Badal categorically said that the second phase of this ambitious program should be solely aimed towards checking the spread of this lethal disease. Expressing concern over the fact that 34430 people in the state have lost their lives in last five year due this disease, Mr Badal said that sustainable efforts should be made to avert any such mishap in the future.

The Chief Minister said that as under this survey around 97% population of the state has been covered, so the Health department now has the concrete database through which they could provide timely treatment to the patients detected with even minute symptoms of this disease. Mr Badal directed the Health and Family welfare department to make sure that proper treatment was provided to 24659 persons who have been reported suffering from this disease besides ensuring suitable diagnostic facilities to 87403 people amongst whom the symptoms of cancer have been traced. He also asked the department to lay thrust on the areas where high concentration of cancer cases was detected so that the spreading of this disease could be controlled as early as possible.

The Chief Minister categorically said that the state government was fully sensitized towards checking this disease and no stone would be left unturned for this noble cause. He hoped that the recent decision of the Cabinet to set up a dedicated fund for eradicating cancer from the state would prove to be another milestone in state government’s crusade against this disease. Mr Badal said that as the treatment of cancer was very costly so the Health department must make sure that every cancer patient was able to get immediate assistance from the Chief Minister’s Cancer Relief Fund.

Lauding the efforts of the Health Department for carrying out this extensive survey, the Chief Minister said that it would go a long way in ensuring early detection of cancer for its timely treatment besides aiding the state government to take more concrete steps for checking this grave problem. However Mr Badal said that the survey was only a preliminary task to deal with this crucial problem and now the real task before them was to ensure that this disease was combated in an effective manner. Assuring the Health department of fulsome support and co-operation from the state government, Mr Badal asked them to work dedicatedly for routing out cancer from the state.

Earlier Health Minister Mr Madan Mohan Mittal apprised the Chief Minister that more than 40,000 duly trained field workers had accomplished this task by visiting 5158154 houses across the state. He said that this pilot project of the state government, which would prove to be a landmark in Punjab government’s battle against cancer, has been completed in a record time of one month.

Prominent amongst those present on the occasion included Principal Secretary Health and Family Welfare Mrs Vinnie Mahajan, Special Principal Secretary to the Chief Minister Mr KJS Cheema, Executive Director State Health Systems Resource Centre Dr Pyare Lal Garg  and Director Health and Family Welfare Dr Ashok Nayyar.


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