National Cancer Awareness Day is observed on November 7 to raise awareness of cancer, the world’s second largest cause of death. Dr. Harsh Vardhan, the Minister of Health at the time, announced the date for this event in September 2014. This date was chosen because it is the birthday of Madame Curie, a well-known scientist who is renowned for her efforts and contributions in the fight against cancer. She is renowned for discovering polonium and radium.
Her groundbreaking work paved the way for the development of nuclear energy and radiotherapy as treatments for the deadly disease.
In 1975, India launched the National Cancer Control Programme. It was conceived with the goal of establishing cancer treatment centres around the country. The focus shifted to early identification and prevention of cancer in 1984-85.
Every year, over 1.1 million new cases are reported in India. In India, the chances of survival are slim because two-thirds of patients are detected at an advanced stage.
Lung cancer and oral cavity cancer are the leading causes of death in men, whereas breast cancer and oral cavity cancer are the leading causes of death in women.
According to estimates, a woman in India dies of cervical cancer every 8 minutes.