Tangerang (ANTARA) - Internal medicine specialist and consultant hematologist-oncologist Jeffry Beta Tenggara emphasized that the lack of public awareness about regular screening and fear were causal to several deaths due to cancer.

"Limited financial factors also cause people to be reluctant to undergo cancer screening, so the death rate due to cancer is still high," Tenggara noted in his statement here on Saturday.

He said other contributing factors were that several people had yet to access appropriate cancer services in addition to a shortage of experts being faced.

"Even though there has been progress in treating cancer, in Indonesia, it turns out that there are still many people who have not received proper cancer services," he stated.

He said breast cancer is one of the most common cancers worldwide and is the main cause of death among women.

Despite its high prevalence, early detection and appropriate treatment can significantly reduce the risk of death from this disease.

Based on data from the Ministry of Health, 70 percent of breast cancer patients have entered stage three when it is detected.

In fact, the average prognosis for breast cancer patients' survival in five years can reach 90-95 percent at stage 1, some 70-75 percent at stage 2, and 10-25 percent at stages 3 and 4.

"The high prevalence rate of breast cancer shows the importance of early detection of cancer, both independently and medically," he stated.

Managing Director of the Siloam Hospital Group Caroline Riady remarked that the spirit against cancer program (Selangkah), a free breast screening for Indonesian women using mammography equipment, will continue this year with a target of 50 thousand women in Indonesia.

This program will be implemented in 14 Siloam hospitals spread across 12 cities.

"In 2023, we have carried out breast screening on 12 thousand women from 65 villages and communities, and nine percent of them were diagnosed with breast cancer," she remarked.

Nunung, a breast cancer survivor, stated that screening or early examination for breast cancer for women is not an option. This is a responsibility for yourself and your family, she said.

"Don't be afraid to do screening. By knowing earlier, the chances of recovery are higher," she stated.

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Translator: Achmad Irfan, Katriana
Editor: Rahmad Nasution
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