Call for improved Women’s Cancer services at the QEH

The original article can be found in: The Barbados Advocate By Ryan Gilkes

A local gyne-oncologist would like to see Women’s Cancer services at the island’s premier health care institution, brought in line with what obtains internationally.

Director of the Cancer Society, Dr. Vikash Chatrani, comments came at the end of the just concluded inaugural First Citizens’ Globe-athon Barbados Walk to end Women’s Cancer.

“I worked in Jamaica for five years and it took three months for a Pap smear result to come back.  Then health care became free and then it took two years for a result to come back. Basically by the time the woman was due for her next test, she wouldn’t have back her first results.

“And there are different challenges in different islands. Here in Barbados, we have free healthcare, women can come and access screening at the Hospital, the polyclinics and Egos like the Barbados Cancer Society and the Barbados Family planning…it takes between three to six months to get results back.   In India where I did my fellowship in gyne-oncology, you can do a pap smear at 11 o clock and within two hours the results would be back on your computer, but that was a cancer centre,” Chatrani noted.

According to him, he would like to see thing reach a stage where results come back within 24 to 48 hours, but this would require the resources to be bolstered.

“…Whether it be the Cytologist, whether it be the collecting system, whether it be the laboratory so that our women don’t have to wait that long to get back a result.  We can make it like the HIV test where you can get back a result instantly or within 24 hours,” Chitrani said.

A study done between 2000 and the end of 2008 showed that there were 308 female cancer patients seen at Queen Elizabeth Hospital and of this number 153 had died as a result of their illness.

Drawing reference to Sunday’s walk, Chatrani noted that the aim was not only to raise fund to improve the women’s cancer services at the QEH, but also it was to heighten awareness not only on the part of women but men as well.

“We are happy with the level of participation which we had, especially for a first-time event such as this.  We had over 1 100 registered. We had the women coming out, getting registered and getting their T-shirts.  We had the men a well and the children and this in itself, speaks volumes especially as far as the men are concerned.

“To us men, the woman is a wife, a girlfriend, a mother, a sister, a friend and a point that we drive home all the time is that Women’s cancer affects the entire family.  Imagine a child whose mother is diagnosed with cancer,” the obstetrician gynaecologist and gyne-oncologist said.

Leave a Comment

Security Question * Time limit is exhausted. Please reload CAPTCHA.

Powered by WordPress