The Punjab Governor and Administrator UT Chandigarh Sh. V. P. Singh Badnore announced that both Chandigarh Administration and Punjab Government would jointly launch a mass awareness campaign and raise awareness about cancer in children. He said that there was a need to formulate friendlier policies to fight the disease.Addressing a meeting of the Cancer Kids Society, the Governor said as a part of the month long awareness activities, 6th CanKids Car Rally covering 15 districts in Punjab would be organised besides launching a community mobilization program at Sector 17, Chandigarh on 24th September, 2017.Speaking to the representatives of Cancer Kids Society, Sh. Badnore said that advocating for Childhood Cancer and the health of the children have always been a priority of the governments. He said that Children suffering from Cancer and their families deserve the best Treatment Care and Support. Under the Go Gold India campaign survivors are pinning Gold Ribbons and collecting 300,000 signatures/pledges one for each child diagnosed with cancer worldwide.He said that accommodation in the form of Home Away Home and Pediatric Palliative Care Centre (dedicated for children with cancer) is extremely important as it is the major health centre of the state treating majority of childhood cancer at PGIMER, Chandigarh. He also said that the Administration in consultations with the PGIMER would form a committee to monitor the project at the initial stages.
The Governor was informed by the Chief Secretary Punjab Mr. Karan Avtar Singh that Cancer Kids Society and Punjab government are jointly observing the month of September as “Childhood Cancer Awareness Month”. During the ongoing campaign Punjab and Chandigarh both are “GOING GOLD.”Gold is the color of childhood cancer. The gold ribbon honors children with cancer and their families and pledges support for childhood cancer to be a child health priority. The initiative also aims to raise survival rates in India where only 40 per cent kids with cancer survive against the global average of 95 per cent. Informing the Governor more about the campaign, Sonal Sharma, CEO of the CanKids Society said that last year similar campaign was launched in Uttar Pradesh at Taj for children with cancer and their families. This year it is the Golden Temple in Punjab, as our childhood cancer survivors’ advocate for Childhood Cancer to be a Child Health Priority in India.Quoting statistics each year more than 300,000 (Age 0-19yr) children and adolescents are diagnosed with one of 16 forms of childhood cancers. Out of the above mentioned numbers 40-50,000 (Age 0-15yrs) are diagnosed in India.It is estimated that Punjab accounts for 969 to 1543 new cases of childhood cancer each year (0-19 years) as per IIC-3 data from IARC Geneva, depending on IICC3 7 PBCRs of India or IICC 3 - World Average incidence rates. (For 0-14 years of age similar data is 687 and 996 respectively). For union territory Chandigarh the new childhood cancer cases each year are 36 to 58, she added.