HMC Launches A Pioneering Survivorship Programme in The Region.

HMC Launches A Pioneering Survivorship Programme in The Region. By Gurmeet Singh - October 20, 2022
HMC Launches A Pioneering Survivorship Programme

HMC Launches A Pioneering Survivorship Programme in The Region

Breast cancer survival rate is high in the country, Due to this Hamad Medical Corporation (HMC) has established a  pioneering survivorship program.

The breast cancer survival rate in Qatar has touched a remarkable level of 84 percent because of high standards of diagnosis and treatment methods, said Chairperson of Medical Oncology and Palliative Care Medicine and Clinical Lead of Breast Cancer Multi Disciplinary Team at HMC’s National Center for Cancer Care and Research (NCCCR), Dr. Salha Bujassoum Al Bader. 

Dr. Al Bader says “The survival rate from breast cancer can reach up to 99 percent if the disease is caught at an early stage. The survival rate is considered higher than other countries,”.

This survivorship program will provide the monitoring of disease activity outside NCCCR and also address the patient's needs.

Dr. Al Bader said “The clinic is first of its kind in the region and run by medical oncologist. The high quality survivorship care includes surveillance for recurrence; monitoring for and managing psychosocial and medical late effects; providing screening recommendations for second cancers,".

Dr. Al Bader also said “It also provides health education to survivors regarding their diagnoses, treatment exposures, and potential late and long-term effects; provides referrals to specialists and resources as indicated; familial genetic risk assessment (as appropriate); guidance about diet, exercise, and health promotion activities; and empowering survivors to advocate for their own healthcare needs,”.

Breast Cancer has become the most common in Qatar and around 31 percent of cases are found in women. The risk of women in the population developing breast cancer is 56 per 100,000 (source: Qatar Cancer Registry). however, men and women can be affected by it. 

Dr. Al Bader Said “Women suspected to have breast cancer will get rapid access to the one stop clinic at HMC through referral from health centers. They will be seen within 48 hours by breast surgeon and undergo imaging, and a biopsy if needed on the same day,”.

She also added “The optimal care of patients with breast cancer is rapidly changing because of advances in all aspects of patient care. There is an increasing focus on providing multidisciplinary care for patients with complex diseases such as breast cancer using integrated teams of professionals representing the relevant treatment modalities, including surgery, radiation therapy, chemotherapy, and systemic medical interventions,”.

She Said “The High-Risk Clinic at the NCCCR is dedicated to evaluating and managing the risk of cancer for both individuals and their families. The clinic incorporates a multidisciplinary approach with the presence of different sub-specialists. Women with any of history of breast cancer or ovarian cancer risk factors can receive medical assessment and investigation at the clinic,” and according to her, maximum cases occur randomly and there are few no that are linked to the family history.

According to Dr. Al Bader, women should be aware of breast cancer symptoms and starts regular breast cancer screening after the age of 45.

By Gurmeet Singh - October 20, 2022

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