Nationwide radio programme in Tajikistan calls for public action to prevent cancer

To increase public awareness of cancer prevention and treatment, the WHO Country Office, Tajikistan, organized a special radio programme on World Cancer Day, 4 February. The programme, which featured an informative discussion between an oncologist and the WHO Representative in Tajikistan, was broadcast on the nationwide radio channel Sadoi Dushanbe, encouraging people to take action to stay healthy – such as by quitting smoking and increasing physical activity. 

Background

Noncommunicable diseases (NCD) including cancer have increasingly replaced communicable diseases as the major causes of morbidity, disability and mortality in Tajikistan. According to a situation analysis of noncommunicable diseases, every year approximately 3 000 new cancer cases are registered, and during the 2005–2010 period the prevalence of newly diagnosed cancers increased from 27.8 to 37.8 per 100 000 population.

In 2009, the Government of Tajikistan ratified a national programme on prevention, diagnosis and treatment of cancers for the period 2010-2015. The programme reflects the importance of focusing on improvement of quality and access to health care services for early cancer diagnosis, specialized oncology medical care, palliative care, and prophylactic measures for reduction of exposure to carcinogenic risk factors. 

WHO continues to work with the Ministry of Health of Tajikistan to analyse the current cancer burden and promote preventive measures as part of a broader noncommunicable diseases (NCD) programme.