The Vice President, Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu, urged people to come forward and enrol themselves with Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission and get benefited from the historic reform. Describing Ayushman Bharat Digital Mission as a revolutionary step in India's public health history, Shri Naidu said that it would provide Indian citizens with unique health IDs and digitised health records with identifiers for doctors and health facilities.
The Vice President made these remarks at the launch of UBF HELP, the first of its kind National dedicated Breast Cancer & Benign Breast Disease Helpline in India set up by Ushalakshmi Breast Cancer Foundation. Appreciating the Breast Cancer 'conquerors' group who will be leading the helpline, Shri Naidu said that their efforts and unwavering commitment towards spreading awareness about breast cancer were praiseworthy, especially because they themselves had gone through the gruelling treatment of breast cancer.
Appreciating the inclusion of trained counsellors in the helpline for one-on-one confidential support to the callers, Shri Naidu said that counselling is an inseparable part of the entire cancer treatment protocol or any other life-threatening medical condition. He said that cancer affects the physical health of a patient and takes a big toll on mental health. "Counselors can help in keeping the patients motivated to fight the illness spiritedly," he added.
Shri Naidu commended UBF HELP for making available every facet of breast cancer and benign non-cancer breast health issues in the Helpline's Resource Section of the website in English and 11 other Indian languages. The Vice President further said that helplines could play an important role in addressing the concerns of people experiencing health issues.
Drawing attention to the growing menace of breast cancer, the Vice President said that breast cancer is the most common cancer worldwide, with around 2.3 million new cases being diagnosed each year and around 6.85 lakh women succumbing to it annually. Noting that at least one-third of common cancers are preventable, Shri Naidu said, "It is imperative that people are made aware of the early signs of cancer so that they can get immediate treatment and increase their chances of survival." He said, "Camps should also be organised to heighten awareness on the rising number of breast cancer cases and on breast health issues."
Highlighting the plight of cancer patients and their family members, Shri Naidu said that in many cases, families end up exhausting their life savings to meet the expenses of the treatment. Referring to the high costs of cancer treatment, the Vice President said there was an urgent need to bring down the cost of cancer treatment.
Dr. Kotha Ushalakshmi Kumari, Founder Chairman, UBF, Dr. P. Raghu Ram, Founder, CEO & Director, UBF, Shri Jayesh Ranjan, Chief Advisor, Ushalakshmi Breast Cancer Foundation, Ms. K. Sandhya Rani, Convenor, Community Services, UBF, Prof. S.P. Somashekhar, President, The Association of Breast Surgeons of India, Prof. Meena Hariharan, President, Association of Health Psychologists, representatives of various doctor's associations, developers of UBF Helpline and others participated in the virtual event.