By Tricitynews Reporter
Chandigarh 07th February:- With lifestyle diseases taking a toll on the healthcare spending and the rise in the need of skilled healthcare professionals, the Indian Institute of Health Management Research (IIHMR University) will celebrate The World Cancer Week. The University invited Dr. Aseem Samer, Oncologist, Mahaveer Cancer Hospital who was present to share his insights on Cancer and also interact with the students of IIHMR University, Jaipur.
Dr. C. Ramesh, Dean School of Pharmaceutical Management, IIHMR University Jaipur said that over the years there is a drastic increase in lifestyle diseases and amongst the most dreaded one is Cancer. Though there has been advancement in cancer care programme and an improvement in technology, there is still lack of accessibility, affordability, awareness and late detection in case of Cancer. He added that Tobacco related cancers for males are estimated to go up to 225,241 and 93,563 for females in the year 2020. Breast cancer cases estimated in India till 2020 will be approximately 1.23 lakhs and the total number of people who will be affected by Cancer will be over 7 crore by 2021 in India alone (as according to EY report on Call for Action: Expanding Cancer Care in India). The mortality rates in India are 4 to 6 times higher as opposed to US with baseline cost of the treatment to be about Rs. 3-4 lacs which is at times higher than the annual income of over 80-85% households.
Dr. Aseem Samar, (DM Medical Oncology) said that in India there is a dire need of healthcare professionals. India currently has a Doctor to Patient Ratio of about 1 in 2000 and aims to achieve a figure of 1 in 1000 for patients suffering from Cancer. India will need about 450-550 dedicated Cancer Centers by 2020. Currently India has over 1250 Oncologists currently and will need over 5000 Oncologists by 2020. This states that the total number of healthcare professionals needed including the Oncologists will be over 8000 by the year 2020. There is also a need to create awareness about Cancer at an early stage which is why we need to create awareness programmes that should highlight the routine check-ups for people especially women to avoid being detected with last stage cancer.
According to EY Report, lack of adequate infrastructure and absence of mass screening programs are key barriers to timely and accurate diagnosis in India. There are an estimated 2,700 mammograms installed in India, which represents less than 5% of that in the US. There are an estimated 120 PET-CT scanners installed in India, the majority of which are in metropolitan cities. Only 30% of the cancer centers in India have advanced imaging technologies such as PET-CT. PET-CT scanners are essential for accurate diagnosis, staging and response monitoring of cancer and are therefore critical to providing comprehensive cancer care. India has only 200-250 comprehensive cancer care centers (0.2 per million population in India vs 4.4 per million population in US), 40% of which are present in eight metropolitan cities and fewer than 15% are government operated. In addition, there is a significant shortage of oncologists in India. India has only one oncologist per 1,600 new cancer patients in India. With all the above requirements we would like to say that India still needs skilled healthcare workforce which is the need of the day.
The number of dedicated Cancer beds is about 5000-6000 and the total number of dedicated beds estimated by 2020 will be over 12000-13000. Cancer affected states in India till date are Jammu & Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Delhi, Uttarakhand, Rajasthan, Maharashtra, Jharkhand, West Bengal, Andhra Pradesh, Kerala, Tripura and Manipur. Breast cancer is the most common form of cancer in the women of Himachal Pradesh, Delhi, Rajasthan, Nagaland and Goa, and the second most common form of malignancy in females of Punjab, Maharashtra and Gujarat. Whereas in Tripura breast cancer represents the third most common form of cancer in women as according to the report Cancer Scenario in India with Future Perspectives.