After the successful outcome of the first and second Community Breast Health Promoters workshops (CBHP) for the Presbyterian Ministers Wives Association (PMWA) on May 16, 2014 in Kumasi and in Accra on Monday June 30, 2014 respectively, the 65 participants for this third and final workshop for the PMWA are selected from the West Akyem, Dangme Tongu, Akuapem, and Akyem Abuakwa Presbyteries to be trained at the Presbyterian Church, Ascension Congregation, Koforidua.
Although the two previous CBHP workshops were made possible through a strong collaboration between Breast Care International (BCI), PMWA, Peace and Love Hospitals, and Inter-Commercial Impex Limited, ROCHE Pharmaceuticals has joined the collaboration for this workshop.
The purpose is to train women to acquire basic breast health knowledge in order to act as voluntary health promoters who would engage their local congregations and communities to seek breast screening by trained health care professionals.
The curriculum for this workshop is similar to the previous ones where the epidemiology and risk factors of breast cancer, basic anatomy and physiology of the breast, pathology of breast cancer, principles and practice of breast cancer awareness creation, and how to refer women with breast problems to appropriate health institutions are discussed.
In addition, the participants will have the opportunity to listen to testimonies from breast cancer survivors who would share their stories highlighting the importance of early detection and prompt action as a way of demystifying the disease.
Upon successful completion of the workshop, the participants would be able to discuss breast health issues with members in their congregations and communities, organize breast health education and clinical breast examination with the involvement of resource persons with the aim of improving community awareness of breast health, screening, and available educational resources.
According to Mrs. Rosekel Omenyo, President of PMWA, although this workshop marks the end of these series of workshops, it is the beginning of her association to be more proactive in breast cancer awareness programs towards early detection and diagnosis whenever any breast abnormality is detected.
Charles Fordjour, Project Leader, Roche Africa Project, Roche Products Ghana Ltd., which has been the major sponsor for this workshop says: “As global leaders in the diagnosis, treatment and monitoring of patients with cancers, we believe every patient irrespective of wherever they are in the world should have the same ideal conditions for management.
That is, the right knowledge that allows them to know about the disease early enough, have access to the right diagnostics and hospitals where very knowledgeable health practitioners will manage them, have access to good counseling that assures them of life, do not have to worry about who pays for her medication because government or private insurance will pay, and have access to all innovative medicines available worldwide which prolong patients’ lives and improves their quality of life.
We therefore seek partnerships with like-minded bodies that seek to improve the disease management and seek to improve patient outcomes. Such innovative programs led by Breast Care International and Peace and Love Hospitals, which seek to empower wives of Pastors in the Presbyterian Church of Ghana, women are potential change leaders in their churches is unique.
We are happy to be identified with such a program that will allow them to train females in their congregation to drive early detection and those women in turn will also teach their daughters, so the knowledge is passed on from generation to generation.”
Dr. Mrs. Beatrice Wiafe Addai, President of BCI said that BCI and Peace and Love Hospitals would continue to engage likeminded organizations to provide the necessary knowledge and skills to individuals within organizations as a way to promote early detection of breast cancer in Ghana, thereby decreasing the increasing breast cancer incidence and mortality.
Dr. Wiafe also appreciated the role of both print and electronic Media for joining hands in the fight against breast cancer in Ghana. BCI acknowledges the assistance from Peace and Love Hospitals, Inter-commercial Impex Limited, Roche Pharmaceuticals, Professor Seth Wiafe, who’s a resource person, and the organizers for supporting this Workshop.
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