The Breast Cancer Initiative East Africa (BCIEA) Inc; in partnership with Rwanda Mid Wives Association has launched a nationwide campaign to raise funds for treatment of breast cancer patients.
The money raised will be channeled through a special fund set up to help meet medical expenses for the most vulnerable people suffering from breast cancer.
A fundraising dinner held on Saturday at Kigali Serena Hotel, attracted scores of well wishers.
The Executive Director of BCIEA Anne N. Rugege thanked all well wishers for their support in helping such people.
“The initiative was inspired by the need to give a chance to patients suffering from breast cancer to get access health services in case they are given referrals abroad,” she said.
She explained that, people are referred abroad but some fail because of air ticket and sometimes, fail to pay for their travel documents.
At the event, Rwf10 million was raised and will address challenges associated with flying patients out of the country in case of referral.
Clemantine Butoya a breast cancer survivor said, there is need to sensitise people more on breast cancer.
“Through this campaign, we want people to know that knowledge is power and together we can save lives. This means that accessing the information will enable many to go for check-up regularly,” she said.
Breast cancer survivors pleaded to government and well-wishers to increase medication prescribed to breast cancer patients.
They claim that there is lack of effective treatment for cancers in Rwanda and yet the number of those affected keep increasing.
Dr Emmanuel Rudakamwa, the Director of Medical Imaging, King Faisal Hospital, said, the reports from Rwanda registry indicate that in five years 5077 cancer cases were reported.
“Although there is a problem of human resource, the government is trying to do its best to improve on the services,” he said.