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IAEA Director General commends India's cancer control expertise

Source : International Atomic Energy Agency link

The establishment of comprehensive cancer control programmes in developing countries demonstrates how nuclear technology can contribute to global development, IAEA Director General Yukiya Amano said during a visit to the Tata Memorial Centre cancer hospital in Mumbai. “Cancer is reaching epidemic proportions in developing countries, but many lack the resources to deal with it,” he said. Having the right facilities in these countries to manage, and even cure cancer, can save thousands of people from this often fatal disease.

Mr Amano thanked India for the generous support it has provided to international efforts in cancer control, in which the IAEA plays an active part. India supplied radiotherapy machines to a number of developing countries and Indian cancer specialists, including from the Tata Memorial Centre, have made important contributions to IAEA research and publications in areas such as radiation oncology.

By 2020, over 10 million people could die of cancer around the world each year, with an increasing proportion in low and middle income countries. The IAEA has been working with partners such as the World Health Organization to assist countries in developing comprehensive cancer control programmes that cover prevention, diagnosis, treatment and palliative care, Mr Amano said. 

See the web site of the IAEA’s Programme of Action for Cancer Therapy (PACT) for more information on the Agency’s role in cancer control and on its cooperation with partners worldwide for higher impact.

“Centre of excellence” in India

Mr Amano complimented the Tata Medical Centre for its role in cancer care and said it did impressive work. “This institution is widely recognised both as a centre of excellence in the treatment of cancer, and for the high quality of its research,” he said.

Earlier, Rajendra Achyut Badwe, Director of the Tata Memorial Centre, briefed Mr Amano on current work on cancer diagnosis and treatment as well as in clinical medicine, research and development, and on recent initiatives in public health.

During his stay in Mumbai, Mr Amano also held discussions with Ratan Kumar Sinha, Secretary of the Department of Atomic Energy and Chairman of the Indian Atomic Energy Commission, and received a briefing on the current status of India’s nuclear power programme.