Death from cancer will increase to 13 percent in Bangladesh by 2030, which was 7.5 percent in 2005, according to International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), experts on a discussion said today.
The discussion followed by a rally at Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University (BSMMU) held today in city's Shahbag area organised by International organisation World Child Cancer and BSMMU under a UK Aid-funded project, marking the International Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, said a press release.
The discussion was told that there are 1.3 to 1.5 million cancer patients in Bangladesh, with about 200,000 patients newly diagnosed with cancer annually.
Chairman of Department of Paediatric Haematology and Oncology Professor Yakub Jamal, head of operations of World Child Cancer Liz Burns, Statutory Grant Manager of World Child Cancer UK Piera Freccero, and project leader of World Child Cancer Bangladesh Prof Afiqul Islam were present among others.
According to World Child Cancer, approximately 70 percent of childhood cancer can be cured if the disease is diagnosed early and treated with appropriate protocols. However, today only 20 percent of the world's children benefit from advanced medical care, according to data compiled by the organisation.
Bangladesh has formulated the National Cancer Control Strategy and Plan of Action 2009-2015 with the assistance of WHO to develop and implement continuum of cancer care through a comprehensive cancer control program.
Experts say poor diagnosis, inadequate number of specially trained healthcare professionals and mistaken belief that childhood cancer is too difficult to cure combine to create very low survival rates.