Mangaluru: The Department of Pediatrics, Kasturba Medical College Mangalore, Hematology and Oncology division observed International Childhood cancer day on February 16th at Sushruta Hall at KMC Hospital Attavar.
International Childhood Cancer Day is observed worldwide on the 15th of February every year to commemorate the children ailing from cancer. The program started at 10.15 am with a beautiful prayer song, being sung by one of the kids ailing from osteo-sarcoma, a form of cancer. The melody and sincerity in her voice won the hearts of many. Following this, there was a brief talk by Dr. Harsha Prasad, Pediatric Hemato Oncology who spoke about the problems that parent of children face at the time of diagnosis and what they could do at that time. He also mentioned that almost 1/3rd of all childhood cancers is Leukemia which if treated right at the time of diagnosis can have a cure rate of at least 80%. His message of ‘Do not leave the chemo-therapy mid-way’ was re-emphasized by Dr. Krishna Prasad, Medical oncologist, KMC Mangalore, who said that cancers in children have far more favourable outcomes compared to those in adults.
Dr Anand Venugopal, Medical Superintendent, KMC Hospitals Mangalore also spoke about the problems faced by parents of chemo kids and that Manipal group of hospitals tries its best to put an effective system in place to address them.
Towards the end of the program, mother of a chemo survivor gave a testimony about how her life changed once her daughter was diagnosed with ALL, a form of blood cancer and how she was educated and made to understand the different modes of therapy that her daughter could undergo to survive. She also spoke about the stigma that she faced as she had a child with cancer and what she did to overcome it. Her experience was an enlightening one to both Doctors and parents alike.
Dr Nutan Kamath, Clinical Head Dept of Paediatrics, was present on this occasion. A drawing competition was also arranged for the children. The kids brought out the best in themselves and after an hour of intense colouring, a few kids were adjudged winners of the event. There was a vote of thanks following which all children were given consolation prizes.