10/04/2011, 00.00

Breast cancer awareness month in Sri Lanka

Melani Manel Perera
Some 700 clinics are set up in the country’s public hospitals, offering free diagnostic tests. Each year, 500 women die from this form of cancer; women between 35 and 40 years are the most at risk.
Colombo (AsiaNews) – October is breast cancer awareness month in Sri Lanka. Throughout it, women will be able to visit clinics for free tests.

In its campaign, the Health Ministry is urging women to take advantage of this opportunity, advising them to have a check-up at least once a year.

Official figures indicate that about 500 women die of breast cancer a year.

“We have planned several activities during the month of October to educate women in the country on issue of breast cancer,” said Health Ministry’s spokesman W.M.D. Wanninayake. “Early detection could prevent breast cancer,” he explained.

"We have set up 700 women clinics at countrywide government hospitals, and the clinics are well equipped and do all the tests free of charge,” he added.

According to the Health Ministry, most women in Sri Lanka do not visit clinics and because of that, they cannot identify the disease until it grows to the unpreventable level.

The most vulnerable group is women between 35 and 40 years.

Talking to AsiaNews several women said they appreciated the government programme on breast cancer awareness.
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