When your country has the highest rate of cancer mortality in the Americas, Cancer detection and prevention moves from being an NGO problem to a national problem. And when the evidence indicates that Breast cancer has the highest mortality rate among women in T&T, you – as a Government and particularly the Minister of Health must be having sleepless nights over this mortality rate. (That’s if you care!)
In this scenario, it is discomforting to read that “a bank has contributed 1M$ and is appealing to citizens to match their pledge in order to buy a mammography machine”. On the other hand an NGO would have to stage at least one thousand 5Ks to raise funds to purchase the machine. Somewhere the priorities are wrong.
Mortality from Cancer and Breast Cancer is now a national epidemic which can only be stemmed by early detection. For less than one eighth of one mile of the proposed Debe to Mon Desir Highway, we could purchase 2 machines for each constituency. Then we could invite NGOs to help run the Mammography centres.
Even if the published estimated cost of the Highway is exaggerated, we may have to forego half a mile, but the point is, it is mind boggling to consider that one mile costing more than three hundred million when weighed up against other urgent needs of our country.