Thousands of people at Akrokerri and its environs in the Adansi North District have received free clinical services at a grand durbar and mini-clinic organised by AngloGold Ashanti, Obuasi Mine and its partners.
The annual event, which is rotated in host communities of the mining firm was put together in collaboration with GIZ, AngloGold Ashanti Health Foundation and the Otumfuo Osei-Tutu II Foundation.
A team of about 60 health workers including doctors, nurses, dispensary technicians and other professionals, were on hand to attend to the health needs of the people.
They were also screened for breast and prostate cancers in commemoration of the global awareness of the disease in every October.
Dr Kwadwo Anim, Executive Director of AngloGold Ashanti Health Foundation, expressed concern about the upsurge in breast and prostate cancers in the Adansi enclave.
He blamed the situation on “westernization of our society” and cautioned the public to desist from certain lifestyles including alcoholism, smoking and bad eating habits.
In 2020, breast cancer was the most frequently diagnosed cancer in women worldwide and in Ghana as it accounted for 31.8 per cent of cancer incidence.
Prostate cancer, on the other hand, is reported to be the second leading cause of male cancer deaths in Ghana and in Korle-bu Teaching Hospital alone, 20 men are diagnosed with the disease every week.
Dr Anim said people’s quest to seek herbal and spiritual assistance instead of going to the hospital for proper diagnosis was a major contributor to most of the fatalities being recorded in the country.
“October every year has been set aside to create awareness about early detection of breast cancer, but it seems people are not heeding the call.
In breast cancer, the prerequisite is early detection and once you report it at the early stage, you can be cured,” he observed.
Mr Edmond Oduro Agyei, the Stakeholders Engagement Superintendent of Anglogold Ashanti, said the mini-clinic formed part of the company’s commitment to improving the living conditions of its host communities.
He said promoting the health of the people prominently featured in the company’s 10-Year Socio-Economic Development Plan, which encompassed a plethora of intervention programmes targeted at improving the lives of the people.
“As we have always mentioned, we don’t want to leave our communities the same way we met them, so included in our 10-year development plan, which we launched in July, is a comprehensive health-related programme targeted at providing solutions to the health care needs of the people and this programme is one of them,” he emphasised.
Anglogold Ashanti as part of its health intervention programmes has also started capacity-building workshops for health workers in Obuasi on infection prevention and other diseases.
Mr Eric Kwaku Kusi, the District Chief Executive for Adansi North District, underscored the importance of Stakeholders involvement in the fight against breast and prostate cancers.
“You will agree with me that government cannot fight these diseases alone hence I applaud Anglogold Asahnti and its partners for coming together to collectively fight breast and prostate cancer,” he said.
Nana Serwaa Buruwaa II, Queenmother of Akrokerri, advised men and women to take education on breast and prostate cancers seriously by reporting to health facilities early.