Cancer News around the Gulf and the Arab Region




National Oncology Centre, Oman: Series of measures to assess risks for all patients in light of the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic

Jul 25 2020

The National Oncology Center is one of the centers in the Royal Hospital, which provides specialized treatment services in the field of oncology, and the center contains several departments, namely, the Adult Oncology Department, the Radiation Therapy Department, the Hematology and Pediatric Oncology Department, the Adult Hematology Department, the Nursing Department and the Pharmacy Department.

A series of measures were adopted based on a risk assessment of each patient, whereby social distancing was practiced by delaying non-urgent appointments or communicating with the patient through virtual clinics, and by delaying unnecessary assessments.

On the impact of health variables on oncology patients, Al-Bahrani stressed that the most important health variables in light of the Corona COVID-19 pandemic are expected to increase the incidence of cancer and a relative increase in the advanced stages of the disease as a result of its negative impact on awareness and early detection, as well as delay in diagnosis, surgeries and referring patients to the center. Many people currently live with symptoms of cancer and are not diagnosed with the Corona pandemic, which may lead to the development of their disease. Many patients currently avoid visiting doctors’ offices due to fear of catching the Coronavirus, as it is possible for a wave of late-diagnosed cancers to accumulate too late.


Bahrain society distributes COVID-19 protection kits to kids with cancer


Dr. Bassim bin Jaafar Al-Bahrani, Director of the National Oncology Centre explained that the Centre has adopted a series of measures to assess risks for all patients in light of the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic. The Centre continues to provide high-quality treatment services to cancer patients in the Sultanate while ensuring the safety of patients and the medical staff working at the center, pointing out that scientific studies have confirmed that people with cancer are more likely to die from the new Coronavirus, but in the Sultanate, deaths do not exceed 1% of the total, which is a low percentage globally, and 99% of cancer patients have recovered.

bahrain-covidMANAMA — “Smile”, an initiative of Bahrain's Future Society for Youth, which provides psycho-social support to children with cancer and their parents in the Kingdom of Bahrain, continued its in-kind support to sick children and their families who are affiliated with the initiative by distributing protective kits to fight the spread of coronavirus.

The initiative concluded successfully in early April, the first campaign was the  distribution of protective kits containing an integrated package of masks, gloves, and sterilizers for children and their families, and now the second campaign of distributing the kits has started after doubling its contents is an indication that the initiative is keen to achieve the most beneficial impact in protecting the children with cancer from COVID-19.

Volunteers of the "Smile" initiative work to deliver this aid to the homes of sick children in different areas of Bahrain's cities, villages and regions, with an explanation of how to use it in the right way. The volunteers do their best to ensure the full implementation of the health and preventive measures for coronavirus. They gather in small teams that sterilize the kits during the packaging and distributing and advise the parents how to use these kits correctly.

According to an emergency plan that was activated by the board of directors for the current stage, the initiative has suspended all group activities, fearing for the health of sick children, and its employees have moved to work from home with a hotline for parents to communicate with the initiative and obtain psychological and social support services.



Helping cancer patients by donating to Ramadan Zakat campaign

27-April 2020

Sharjah: UAE-based non-profit organization Friends of Cancer Patients (FOCP) recently launched its eighth annual ‘I Deserve a Life’ Ramadan Zakat campaign, aimed at raising funds to help cancer patients who cannot afford the high cost of treatment.

zakatThe campaign will have options to enable donors to make their contributions online, in light of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

The campaign, which was first launched in 2013, has so far collected Dh6.854 million and supported treatment for 1,320 patients, including their chemotherapy, radiotherapy, surgical procedures and other urgent expenses during the early stages of treatment and care.

“Many of the patients have recovered and gone on to lead normal productive lives. Others who required long-term treatment and support were also given loving care till they recovered fully and were rehabilitated,” FoCP said in a statement.

Oman Cancer Association (OCA) will host the next World Cancer Congress on 19 – 22 October, 2020

Oman Cancer 2020The Oman Cancer Association (OCA) will host the next World Cancer Congress on 19 – 22 October, 2020. This will be the first time that the Congress will be held in MENA-EMRO region

‘The Way Forward’ is the theme for the 2020 World Cancer Congress, highlighting the need for the region to work towards a future free from cancer.


The program will be comprehensive and geared to address pressing issues in cancer control regionally and internationally, from prevention to treatment and palliation. It will lay a solid foundation for knowledge exchange, best practices and experience-sharing and, take a deep dive into the role and impact of advocacy and social enterprises in complimenting the work of the government and private sectors in driving a patient-centered strategy. Muscat’s commitment to health and hospitality is the perfect landscape for this event. Mark your calendars for 19-22 October 2020 and join the 2020 World Cancer Congress in Muscat. For more information, visit: or the Oman Cancer Association website at

FOCP Highlights its achievements at the Third Combined Gulf Cancer Conference in the Kingdom of Bahrain

Bahrain ConferenceFriends Of Cancer Patients (FOCP), a charitable institution in the UAE dedicated to support the treatment of cancer patients as well as raising awareness about the importance of early detection of cancer, has participated in the third edition of the Combined Gulf Cancer Conference, organized by the Bahrain Cancer Society under the umbrella of the Gulf Federation for Cancer Control (GFFCC) and Gulf Centre for Cancer Control & Prevention.

FOCP’s participation stemmed from its commitment to participate in both regional and international events dedicated to raising awareness of cancer prevention and the latest innovation in treatment. The third edition of the conference was held under the theme, ‘Quality Care: New Horizons’, and offered delegates the opportunity to learn from the knowledge and experience of a host of internationally renowned experts. It aims to support health systems in the Gulf region with a focus on early detection and research, especially in breast, colon and rectal cancers.


WHO: 35,000 people dying of cancer in Yemen

Yemen_deadSep 4, 2019. At least 35,000 people in Yemen are facing an early death due to the lack of adequate cancer treatment, the World Health Organisation (WHO) reported. “Cancer could be a death sentence in Yemen unless treated,” the WHO wrote on its twitter account. “An estimated 35K people will die from cancer if treatment is no longer provided as a consequence of no funding. No more cancer treatment drastically increases the number of lives that will be lost to this disease.” Around 12 per cent of those suffering from cancer are children, added the organization.

Yemen has been embroiled in an armed conflict since 2014 which contributed to the creation of a humanitarian catastrophe in the country. Millions of people face starvation, malnutrition, lack of access to clean water and shortages of medicines and medical supplies, while health centres have been closed due to the war.

Cancer third leading cause of death in UAE

UAE deathsJuly 7, 2019. A report released last week has revealed  that in 2015, the third leading cause of death in the UAE was cancer (after circulatory system diseases and injuries). Of the 8,755 deaths reported in the year, 867 (9.9 per cent) were claimed by cancer. According to the second annual statistical report of the UAE National Cancer Registry that collated data for 2015, breast cancer was the leading cause of cancer deaths (113), while malignant of trachea bronchus and lung cancer was reported as the second leading cause with 104 deaths. About 87.3 per 100,000 females in the UAE are afflicted with a type of cancer. Overall, the crude incidence rate of the cancers was 43.3/100,000 for females and 27.2/100,000 for the males. Officials said the data was "likely to be more or less" representative of the year 2018. "The UAE is in the midst of a war on non-communicable diseases (NCDs)," said Dr Mohamed Salim Al Olama, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Health and Prevention. "This document will throw light on the cancer burden in the country."

Cooperation between ESTRO and GFFCC

An agreement between the European Society for Radiotherapy and Oncology (ESTRO) and the Gulf Federation for Cancer Control (GFFCC) was held in a meeting in Milan, Italy on 28 April 2019.

This cooperation would enhance the opportunities of GFFCC member associations, particularly oncologists in the gulf region, to participate in clinical research exchanges; encourage GCC oncologists to become ESTRO members, etc. ESTRO on the other hand would participate in annual gulf conferences by providing lectures, share experiences and provide technical support for physicists like calibration of medical equipment, etc.


Participants to the ESTRO-GFFCC cooperation meeting in Milan, Italy



Morocco becomes a member-observer of the Gulf Cooperation Council
His Excellency the Minister of Health in the Kingdom of Morocco, Dr. Anas Doukali, received a delegation from the General Secretariat of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) who visited to discuss the efforts of the Kingdom of Morocco in combatting cancer. The visit comes as Morocco became a member-observer of the GCC.
Tmoroccohe delegation of the GCC is composed of Mr. Mohsen Mubarak Al Dosari, Director of Health Department of the General Secretariat of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), Dr. Ali Al Zahrani, Executive Director of the Gulf Center for Cancer Control and Prevention, Dr. Khaled Ahmed Al Saleh, Secretary General of the Gulf Federation for Cancer Control and a member of the Advisory Council of the GCCCP; and Mr. Abdulaziz Fahad Al-Hamoud, Head of Health Affairs Department, Department of Health,  General Secretariat of the GCC.
The GCC delegation will visit the Directorate of Epidemiology and Disease Control for the National Plan for Prevention and Combating Cancer, as well as the Lalla Salma Foundation for Prevention and Treatment of Cancer and the National Institute of Moulay Abdullah for Oncology.


CAN Campaign


CAN Kuwait launches campaign to raise awareness on breast cancer
1 October 2018

(KUNA) – Kuwait’s National CAN Campaign has launched its annual Breast Cancer Awareness Campaign under the slogan "You deserve it" in partnership with the Kuwaiti Women's Volunteer Society for Community Service and Development. "The campaign will continue throughout October," said campaign member Dr. Hessa Al Shaheen at a press conference and will include a series of events across the country's six governorates.

She pointed out that the cooperation between CAN and the Kuwaiti Women's Voluntary Society for the service and development of society is the first of the many new activities and campaigns during the coming period characterized by great diversity as it carries many surprises that will be announced continuously throughout the month via the website of the campaign or the accounts in various social networking sites.

She explained that the breast cancer campaign achieved last year a great success and included many awareness events in cooperation with several public and private institutions. She stressed CAN's keenness to raise awareness of all types of cancers through activities throughout the year, explaining that breast cancer has always been given special attention.

For her part, the Chairperson of the Kuwaiti Women's Volunteer Society for Community Service and Development Sheikha Fadia Al-Sabah said in a similar speech during the conference that she is very glad in the cooperation with CAM Campaign, stressing that the community is also responsible for health awareness. Sheikha Fadia Al-Sabah added that the society should also be an initiator, noting that it is from this principle that we start participating in such events.

For his part, the chairman of the CAN Campaign Dr. Abdulrahman Al-Awadhi stressed during the conference that the principle of "prevention is better than cure" applies to all diseases, especially cancer, which if detected early, has a higher cure rate. Dr. Al-Awadhi added that the campaign has succeeded in achieving great achievements in the field of awareness of cancer diseases, including breast cancer, where it was able to train more than 80,000 high school students on self-examination for themselves.

Dr. Khalid Al-Saleh, Deputy Chairman of the CAN Campaign, said that the annual report of the Kuwait Cancer Control Center showed an improvement in the rate of cancer cure due to improved early detection which is well suited to breast cancer. The CAN National Campaign was launched in 2006 and seeks to combat cancer through awareness of various types of cancer and encourages early detection to improve the rates of cure and recovery.


Fighting Breast Cancer with Walking

20 October 2018

The Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Bahrain Cancer Society Dr. Abdulrahman Fakhro said that cancer affects between 40 and 45 cases of every 100 thousand cases, noting that breast cancer is the most common cancer in Bahrainis in general. This is the rationale for the "Manama ... Pink City" event, where the association organized a walking event yesterday in Awali, the "annual marathon" to start awareness activities that will continue throughout October.

Dr. Fakhro pointed out that the Bahrain Cancer Socity organized many events in October which coincides with the global initiative to raise awareness of breast cancer, to highlight the fight against the disease, and to motivate women to carry out early detection tests.

Dr. Fakhro explained in a statement that the association organized more than 10 different events throughout October, including lectures and seminars and the distribution of brochures and educational info materials on cancer; to raise awareness among citizens and residents about the importance of regular checks and the importance of sports/exercise that makes a difference in the life of the individual and society.

Dr. Fakhro added that the association provided the Ministry of Health with sophisticated cancer detection devices, which cost one million dinars. He stressed that all donations received by the society, or received from donors and volunteers during its activities, are used to treat and fight cancer among different segments of society.

For her part, co-founder of the voluntary community campaign "Obesity Not to Qualify" consultant Dr. Kawthar Eid and her volunteer team were present to support cancer patients and to activate community partnership.

Dr. Eid said that early examination means early treatment at the first stages of the disease, and that means healing by up to 90% of the cases, noting that the effectiveness of walking today is to raise awareness of the importance of physical activity and to prevent the incidence of noncommunicable diseases, including cancer, Scientific research indicates that physical activity protects against breast cancer.



HH the Amir received the Chairman and members of the Board of Directors of CAN Campaign Kuwait

May 30, 2018

His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al- Jaber Al-Sabah received the Board of Directors of the CAN Campaign in Kuwait led by Dr. Abdulrahman Al- Awadi, Chairman of the Board, Dr. Khalid Ahmed Al Saleh, Vice President, Dr. Rashid Al-Hamad and Dr. Ali Al-Saif. They presented to His Highness the Amir the annual report of CAN Campaign which is under the auspices of His Highness the Amir for the last six years. His Highness thanked them for their efforts in the campaign against cancer and the promotion of healthy lifestyle which has benefitted the citizens and residents of the State of Kuwait. On the same occasion, they presented a memento to express their deep gratitude to His Highness the Amir for his support to awareness activities and belief in the importance of public health.


QCS campaign calls for early detection of bowel cancer

 26 Jul 2018

DOHA: Qatar Cancer Society (QCS) in cooperation with Primary Health Care Corporation (PHCC) has launched a campaign to encourage the early detection of bowel cancer as part of the ‘Screen for Life’ national programme. Dr. Khalid bin Jabor Al Thani, Chairman of QCS, visited the bowel cancer screening suite at Leabaib health centre. Bowel cancer screening targets men and women aged 50 to 74 years. Dr. Al Thani said that the new campaign aims to spread and promote the culture of early detection of bowel cancer which is one of the most common cancers in Qatar. Dr. Al Thani also called individuals between the age of 50 and 74 years take early screening for bowel screening. Further, according to Dr. Al Thani, the positive impact of continuous awareness activities about prevention and early detection of different types of cancers could be seen in another three years of time. calls-for-early-detection-of-bowel-cancer 



Health forum launches ‘Every Voice Matters’ cancer initiative

July 25, 2018

RIYADH — Around the world, men’s life expectancy continues to be lower compared to women, in part due to them being less likely to visit a doctor. For men, prostate cancer is the second most common cancer in the world and third most common in Saudi Arabia. Currently more than 8% of the Kingdom’s population is over the age of 55 - within the age group at risk of prostate cancer - this number is expected to increase as the population continues to age.

The current knowledge gap in patient care was addressed during a panel discussion ‘Understanding Prostate Cancer patient needs’ held during the Arab League for Patients Organizations Forum in Egypt. The forum also saw the launch of the ‘Every Voice Matters’ initiative. ‘Every Voice Matters’ aims to give prostate cancer patients a voice, so that their needs are heard and understood. The MENA wide initiative is endorsed by medical societies and patient organizations from across the region including Saudi Cancer Foundation (KSA); Saudi Urology Association (KSA); Emirates Urology Society (UAE); Friends of Cancer Patients (UAE); Egyptian Urology Association (Egypt); Can Survive (Egypt), Lebanese Medical Oncology Society (Lebanon); and Lebanese Urology Society (Lebanon). During Phase one of the initiative, a prostate cancer patient survey will be conducted by IPSOS (independent research agency) in Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, UAE, and Egypt. The results are expected to be announced by November 2018. Phase two of the initiative will see cross industry collaboration and activities to address needs identified by the survey.

Dr. Mohamed Elsayes, Medical Director of Saudi Cancer Foundation said: “Our key mission is to raise awareness of cancer and fight cancer on all fronts through all possible direct and indirect channels. We believe that understanding patients’ needs will allow us to drive action in the right direction to meet those needs.”

“The cancer care ecosystem is complex involving many stakeholders – treating physicians, patients’ family and friends, patient organizations, government and pharmaceutical companies - who often don’t engage with the patient directly or collaborate among themselves.” Dr. Elsayes elaborating the benefits of ‘Every Voice Matters’ initiative, said: “Having data driven insights of what prostate cancer patients need the most we will allow us to identify areas for collaboration among all stakeholders and to advance patient care.”

‘Every Voice Matters’ gives patients the opportunity to share their story on how prostate cancer has affected their life, so men fighting the disease can receive the support that they need.

2nd Gulf Cancer Conference Kicks-off in Riyadh

March 27, Riyadh
The second Gulf conference on cancer started on Tuesday in the Saudi capital, with the participation of 12 experts representing some international institutions and organizations specialized in cancer treatment.

The three-day conference, which also features 27 Gulf and Saudi experts from different sectors, aims to boost cooperation among several Gulf health institutions on care programs for cancer patients and building national capabilities.

The three-day conference, which also features 27 Gulf and Saudi experts from different sectors, aims to boost cooperation among several Gulf health institutions on care programs for cancer patients and building national capabilities. In a recorded speech during the opening of the congress, Majid al-Fayyad, general supervisor of the general establishment of King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Center, said that GCC health and medical institutions are concerned about increased cancer cases in GCC member states. Most cases are diagnosed in advanced stages, he added, indicating that cancer cases in the Gulf region are expected to double in the next ten years due to change in lifestyle and increased risks of smoking, obesity, inactivity and others. He called for quickly adopting an effective plan by GCC health institutions to respond to these indicators and translate challenges into investment in the programs of preventive health, early detection stages and healthcare. He stated that evidence and scientific research indicate that 40 percent of cancer diseases can be cured, if the disease is detected in its early stages. He noted that 90 percent of breast and colon cancer, the most common in GCC states, is treated if the diseases are detected early.


Secretary General of the Gulf Federation for Cancer Control (GFFCC) Khaled Al-Saleh said in a speech at the event that about 8.8 million people die every year from cancer. According to the recent statistics by the World Health Organization about 14 million people were diagnosed with cancer in 2012. He stressed the importance of developing programs for implementing some societal initiatives on the early detection stages of cancer and conducting surveys. He also recommended people to avoid causes which lead to cancer that include smoking, unhealthy behavior and others.

Genitourinary and Gynecological Cancers: Recent Updates
State of Kuwait, April 14-16, 2018

GUG-KUThe conference was organized by the Kuwait Cancer Control Center under the patronage of H.E. the Minister of Health, Dr. Basel H. Al Sabah. A series of special lectures by international and regional oncology experts presented their latest studies and updates on these two cancer topics. It was also during this occasion that H.E. Dr. Abdul Rahman Al Awadi, Chair of Kuwait Cancer Society and Smoking Prevention, was awarded the “symbol of cancer awareness” as a recognition to his long and unwavering work in promoting cancer prevention and awareness in Kuwait and in the region.

Pink Caravan ride for breast cancer awareness begins end of February

January 10, 2018, Sharjah:  Organizers of the Pink Caravan Ride, the UAE's most important and extensive annual cancer awareness campaign have confirmed that the eighth edition of the event will take place from February 28 until March 6.

IMAGE3The nationwide initiative by the Friends of Cancer Patients (FoCP), which promotes the importance of early detection of breast cancer, will set off around the UAE on a seven-day mission to offer free health advice and medical screenings to all members of the community.

This year, the Pink Caravan Ride will be condensed and intensified into one day for each of the seven emirates, sharing its message of awareness across the country. The ride will travel with highly-trained medical teams with specialist knowledge of cancer detection and the most contemporary methods and equipment of identifying the disease.

The Pink Caravan's efforts have contributed to dispelling misconceptions surrounding breast cancer, and encouraging thousands of women and men from across the UAE to be part of early detection examinations. It has also contributed to breaking down the barriers of fear and embarrassment, making breast cancer a community concern engaging all segments of society in combating it.

Sheikha Jawaher bint Mohammed Al Qasimi, wife of the Ruler of Sharjah, founder and Royal Patron of FoCP, International Ambassador for the World Cancer Declaration of the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC) said: "This humanitarian initiative has contributed to dispersing the myths of cancer. The Pink Caravan has reached an enormous amount of people living in the UAE and is one of the most successful drives in combating breast cancer. The campaign will continue to provide free medical check-ups and help patients, not only during the seven-day nationwide tour, but throughout the year."

She called on the civil community, private and public sectors to participate in the ride and make every possible effort to continue its success.

Over the past seven years, the Pink Caravan has travelled 1,640 kilometers across the seven emirates, with more than 490 riders and 700 volunteers who worked for over 200,000 volunteer hours - the equivalent of 23 years of non-stop work.

The Pink Caravan has also conducted lectures and workshops in 87 schools and provided free clinical examinations to 48,874 Emiratis and residents, including 9,643 men.


His Highness Dr. Sheikh Sultan Bin Mohammad Al Qasimi inaugurates 2nd Global NCD Alliance Forum 2017  
December 10, 2017
Sharjah: The Second Global NCD (Non-Communicable Diseases) Alliance Forum 2017” was inaugurated by His Highness Dr. Sheikh Sultan Bin Mohammad Al Qasimi, UAE Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah on Saturday afternoon at the Al Jawaher Reception & Convention Centre.

The international summit with 350 delegates, mostly civil society members and from the non-government organizations in 68 countries, is under the directives and patronage of Sheikha Jawaher bint Mohammed Al Qasimi, founder and royal patron of the Friends of Cancer Patients and patron of Global NCD Alliance Forum. The theme is of the forum is “Stepping Up the Pace on NCDs: Making 2018 Count.” In his inaugural speech, Sheikh Sultan repeatedly acknowledged the big help of the civil society in letting governments of their respective countries be more conscious and more active in promoting health of the people against NCDs. Sheikh Sultan highlighted the urgent need to hold an international gathering of like-minded individuals from across the globe, saying that NCDs have become a burden to each and every country, adding that current records have shown that globally, topping the list is cancer with 100 million people affected with 15 million deaths per year.

Relating cancer to excessive tobacco use, Sheikh Sultan said it was two years back that Sharjah led in the prohibition of smoking in public places such as workplaces and cafes. Following cancer is obesity and for this, the Ruler of Sharjah mentioned that soon, the emirate will be rolling out air-conditioned walkways so that even in the hottest five months of the year, residents and visitors would be able to jog or walk around the city for health as rubber-paved pathways have been provided for already. It was 32 years ago when Sharjah banned alcohol, the third leading cause of NCDs. Sheikh Sultan said all the achievements could not have been accomplished without the help of the civil society. NCD Alliance president Jose Luis Castro said the constant ballooning of the NCDs on the global scale is a “global tsunami” sparing no country nor government, adding that its socio-economic cost hit $7 trillion, equivalent to the combined gross domestic product of France, India and Brazil in 2016. World Health Organization - High Level Commission co-chairman and former Pakistan health minister Dr. Sania Nishtar said the sordid plight of the poor, the sick and the hungry across the globe could only be mitigated through a leadership committed to erase these conditions. She said the Sharjah leadership is an exemplary example of that leadership. The summit is in preparation to the Sept. 2018 high level meeting at the United Nations wherein all countries and governments will be requested to report on how they have tackled NCDs in relation to the sustainable goals of the international body. Sharjah hosted the first convention of the NCD forum in 2015 from where recommendations from the delegates was later known as the Sharjah Declaration.

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National campaign for breast cancer awareness launched in Riyadh

14 October 2017  
Riyadh: Riyadh Gov. Prince Faisal bin Bandar on Friday held a ceremony to launch the national campaign for breast cancer awareness titled “Minutes can be transformed into years” organized by Zahra Breast Cancer Association, in cooperation with many governmental and non-governmental bodies. The ceremony was held at the Saudi Electricity Co. (SEC) Club.

Princess Haifa Al-Faisal, Chairwoman of the Zahra Association, stressed the importance of early detection of breast cancer. The secret of Zahra’s success is the cooperation and coordination between the public and private sectors, she added. She signed four agreements, in the presence of Prince Faisal, between the association and King

 Abdullah Hospital, the Saudi National Committee for Mental Health Promotion, the Saudi Physical Therapy Association, and the Saleh Al-Alyan Organization. Prince Faisal said: “We appreciate the important work of the Zahra Association and I am happy to see such an organization, so I call on Princess Haifa and the fellow board members to continue their work, and I ask patients to cooperate with the association for their own interest.” Meanwhile, the fight against cancer in women will top the agenda of the Ministry of Health during its participation in the global health awareness program to be launched in the Kingdom shortly. According to an official from the ministry, creating awareness on the prevention of cancer will be a priority because of the increasing incidence of the disease in the Kingdom. He added that the program will include several activities and awareness programs through social networking sites, malls, public places and parks. Patients detected with breast cancer in the early stages through mammogram tests have a 95 percent chance of recovery from the disease. He explained that the target group for mammogram tests includes women who are above the age 40, or are 30 to 40 years of age if the woman has a family history of the disease.

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Saudi archaeological site lit in pink for breast cancer awareness month

8 October 2017
The archaeological site Mada’in Saleh within the Province of Al-Madinah was bathed in pink lights to support awareness campaigns during breast cancer month.
The health sector in the governorate of Al-Ula, where Mada’in is located, launched several events for raising awareness for early detection of breast cancer under the title of “Complete your battles”. The campaign targets awareness and prevention of breast cancer risks. According to international studies, one out of eight women suffer from the disease, and 95 percent of these cases can be cured if diagnosed early.

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KIB sponsors Al-Sidra Association’s breast cancer awareness campaign
Oct. 16, 2017

Kuwait: In commemoration of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Kuwait International Bank (KIB) announced its sponsorship of the awareness campaign organized by Al-Sidra Association for Psychological Care of Cancer Patients, which is taking place throughout the month of October. This sponsorship comes as part of the Bank’s expansive breast cancer awareness campaign, as well as its long-standing strategic partnership with Al-Sidra Association.

Oman to host 2020 World Cancer Congress
May 16, 2017
Muscat: In October 2020, Oman will host up to 4,000 cancer control experts from more than 140 countries at the World Cancer Congress, and the World Cancer Leaders’ Summit, winning their bid over Sao Paulo, Brazil.

“The Oman Cancer Association (OCA) and its partner the National Oncology Centre are proud to announce, on behalf of its associates the Oman Convention Bureau and the Oman Convection and Exhibition Centre, the winning of the bid for the 2020 UICC (International Union for Cancer Control) Congress and the 2020 World Cancer Leaders’ Summit in Muscat, Oman,” said Dr. Wahid Al Kharusi, chairperson of the Oman Cancer Association, recently.

OCA will sign the contract for this prestigious World Congress on behalf of its partners and associates within a few days, where six heads of states are also expected to attend. “This congress was awarded to Oman due to a number of positive criteria-The Global recognition of the work of the Oman Cancer Association nationally, regionally and globally, especially its active work in the International Cancer Prevention Consortium (ICPC),” Said Al Kharusi.

UICC is a highly globally reputed organization that is registered with the United Nations and represents more than 140 member countries, with its headquarters in Geneva. OCA and the National Oncology Centre are fulltime members of the UICC.

According to Dr. Zahid Al Madhari, senior consultant at the Oncology Department in the Royal Hospital, “One of the main reasons of the congress being held in Oman is that we have different sets of challenges in the region than the western world. “This is the first time the congress is happening in the Middle East or even this region as a whole, so we will work together with some of the neighboring countries to focus on tackling some of these challenges.”

The bid was submitted by OCA President Al Kharusi, Dr. Basem Al Bahrani, director and Dr. Zahid Al Mandhari, deputy director at the National Oncology Centre, with the support of Dr. Ahmed Mohammed Obaid Al Saidi, minister of Health for of Oman. Oman-to-host-2020-World-Cancer-Congres 

The Ministry of Health & Prevention Signs an Agreement with the Friends of Cancer Society to Strengthen the National Breast Cancer Registry
4 June 2017

The Ministry of Health & Prevention (MOHAP) signed a solution level contract with the Friends of Cancer Patients to strengthen institutional teamwork in research and data to establish UAE’s National Cancer registry. The contract was authorized at the Ministry’s head office in Dubai by Dr. Hussein Abdel-Rahman Al Rand, Assistant Undersecretary of MOHAP’s Health Centers and Clinics Field, and H.E. Sawsan Al Fahoum Jafar, Chairman of the Board, Friends of Patients Society.

Dr. Al-Rand highlighted the importance of the contract, as part of efforts to reinforce community collaborations between private companies and civil society organizations to achieve teamwork in the fight against breast cancer.

MOHAP released the ‘Itmenan’ initiative to decrease the number of deaths from cancer. Through the initiative, the Ministry has successfully lowered cancer deaths from 99 to 64.2 per 100,000 population.

The contract was signed to enhance the UAE’s National Cancer Registry and achieve key efficiency indicators. H.E. Sawsan Al Fahoum Jafar emphasized the crucial role of the contract to enhance the National Cancer Registry, by enhancing the cooperation to fight breast cancer, and to encourage everyone for support the project. signs-agreement-friends-cancer-societystrengthen- national-breast

One-year countdown begins to the 2017 Global NCD Alliance Forum
9 December 2016, Geneva.-

The second edition of the Global NCD Alliance Forum, the most important event convening civil society organizations working on the prevention and control of Non-communicable Diseases (NCDs) worldwide, will take place in one year, from 9 to 11 December 2017 in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates (UAE).

The Forum will be held under the patronage of Her Highness Sheikha Jawaher bint Mohammed Al Qasimi, Wife of the Ruler of Sharjah, and Founder and Patron of Friends of Cancer Patients (FoCP), and co-hosted by the NCD Alliance and Friends of Cancer Patients.

It will bring together representatives from NCD civil society from across the world, particularly national and regional NCD alliances, building links with multilateral organizations, international NGOs, government representatives and NCD experts.
The first Global NCD Alliance Forum took place in November 2015 in Sharjah, and was the largest gathering of NCD civil society at the global level. It resulted in increased knowledge and advocacy skills, new networks and connections, as well as the landmark Sharjah Declaration on NCDs. “The second edition will build on the success of the 2015 Forum. It will serve as an interactive and dynamic platform to share lessons learnt, best practice and solutions in accelerating action on NCDs at all levels”, said José Luis Castro, Chair of NCD Alliance.

The 2015 Forum brought together NCD civil society at a pivotal moment - two months after world leaders adopted the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. “The timing of the 2017 Forum will be equally important. It will provide an opportunity to mobilize the NCD community ahead of the 2018 UN High-Level Review on NCDs. We will unite around priorities for this next global milestone, and strategies to ensure we achieve meaningful outcomes for NCD prevention and control”, said Katie Dain, Executive Director of the NCD Alliance.
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Qatar Cancer Society Collaborates With Doha Bank To Raise Awareness Of Prostate Cancer

Qatar Cancer Society (QCS) has launched a sporting event in collaboration with Doha Bank as part of the campaign “Be mustache – check” to raise awareness of prostate cancer, which is the second most common cancer in men in Qatar and the world, and the fifth leading cause of deaths in men from cancer globally.

QCS is holding awareness lectures and workshops involving various sectors in the country to raise awareness of the symptoms of the disease, the factors responsible for it, as well as methods of prevention and cure. According to Dr. Hadi Mohamad Abu Rasheed, MD, Health Education, the risk of getting prostate cancer rises rapidly after the age of 50, while family history more than doubles a man’s risk of developing this disease. What’s more, men who eat a lot of red meat or high-fat dairy products and fewer fruits and vegetables are susceptible to develop prostate cancer. Obese men run a higher risk of getting more advanced and serious prostate cancer. Smoking is linked to increased risk of deaths from prostate cancer while exposures to chemicals in the workplace may also increase one’s risk. Dr. Rasheed added,

“Symptoms of prostate cancer at the early stage are hardly visible. The symptoms become visible in advanced stages. In most cases, symptoms are caused by benign prostatic enlargement, or an infection. So, it is important that you see a doctor to understand the symptoms.” Symptoms of prostate cancer include problems urinating, such as a weak or interrupted urinary flow, pain while urinating, inability to urinate, sense of incomplete emptying of the bladder, intense need to urinate, or the need to urinate more often, especially at night.


Friends of Cancer Patients launches Arabic version of Cancer Atlas at SIBF

SHARJAH, 4th November, 2016 (WAM)--The Friends of Cancer Patients (FoCP) has launched the Arabic version of the second edition of the Cancer Atlas in collaboration with the American Cancer Society, the International Agency for Research on Cancer, and the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC).

The launch comes on the fringe of FoCP’s participation in the 35th edition of the Sharjah International Book Fair (SIBF), currently taking place at Expo Centre Sharjah from 2nd -12th November. The Cancer Atlas collates a large variety of research and cancer data from 184 countries and combines the findings into a comprehensive guide that illustrates the global cancer landscape. It highlights non-communicable diseases in general and cancer in particular, outlining precautionary health measures that governments can take to reduce the burden of the cancer epidemic, especially in low and middle-income communities.

The Cancer Atlas also provides a comprehensive global overview of information about the psychological effects of cancer on patients and their families, associated risk factors, methods of prevention and measures of control. It also features three main chapters dealing with risk factors, burden of cancer and taking action. H.H. Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Mohammad Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, signed the first copy of the Cancer Atlas at FoCP’s booth, in the presence of FoCP's board members, including Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdullah Al Thani, Mohammed Al Musharrakh, Noha Safar and Dr. Shereen Habib. FoCP has prepared 500 copies of the Cancer Atlas that will be distributed to organizations and bodies that are dedicated to spreading cancer awareness locally and internationally.

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Pink Caravan Ride 2015 concludes after Free Breast Cancer Screenings for 5,000 People -
Sharjah, 25th March, 2015 -

The Pink Caravan Ride wrapped up its 10 day awareness campaign today after screening more than 5000 people across all seven Emirates in the UAE travelling a distance of 243 km. The initiative, a pan-UAE breast cancer awareness drive by the Friends of Cancer Patients charity (FoCP), has now screened approximately 35000 men and woman of all nationalities since its inception five years ago.

In its 5th year, the Pink Caravan has been honored with the participation and support of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, HH Dr. Sheikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, and HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairman of the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Foundation.

Ameera Bin Karam, President of the Board of Trustees, founding member of FoCP and Chairperson of the Higher Organizing Committee of the Pink Caravan Ride, said, "I’d like to thank all those who contributed to the success of the fifth annual ride, including partners, volunteers, sponsors, supporters, riders, doctors, nurses, media professionals and community members, whose cooperation and interaction have contributed significantly to the success of the Pink Caravan Ride and enabling it to offer examinations to over 5000 people throughout the journey." Also in attendance during this important event was Dr. Sawsan Al Madhi, Secretary General of FoCP and Dr. Khaled Ahmed Al Saleh, General Secretary of the GFFCC.

Since its inception in 2011, the Pink Caravan has sought to raise awareness about the importance of early detection of breast cancer, and highlight the impact of the disease throughout the UAE. The Pink Caravan's efforts have contributed to dispelling misconceptions related to breast cancer, and providing financial and emotional support to breast cancer patients and their families. The Pink Caravan has played a significant role in reducing breast cancer’s incidence, and diminishing its progression to advanced stages through free screenings that help protect the lives of citizens and residents across the country. 

Gulf Awareness Group established and MOU with IARC -

The establishment of the Gulf Awareness Group was recently been agreed through a partnership between the Gulf Centre for Cancer Control and Prevention under the Executive Office of the Health Ministers’ Council for the GCC and the Gulf Federation for Cancer Control, a non-government organization with 16 member cancer associations in the gulf. Three meetings were already held by the Gulf Awareness Group in Riyadh, Al Hasaa and Kuwait to discuss the details of a gulf cancer campaign. It has been agreed that the first week of February (1-7) shall be observed as an Annual Cancer Awareness Week in the gulf where awareness activities will be held all over the gulf region.

The Gulf Centre for Cancer Control and Prevention also made an important announcement recently about the Memorandum of Understanding for cooperation between the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) under the World Health Organization and all the  Cancer Centers in the Gulf. This MOU will facilitate information and improve the study and research of cancer in the region.

Saudi Arabian Princess Reema Takes on Breast Cancer Awareness with more Social Media
March 14, 2015

Original article written by Lauren Johnson (edited by the GJO). During a keynote today at South by Southwest, Princess Reema Bint Bandar Al-Saud, launched a new campaign that will rely heavily on social and mobile media to spread the word. The initiative is dubbed 10KSA and is part of Zahra Breast Cancer Association, Princess Reema's fundraising organization. On Oct. 24, 2015 10KSA aims to bring 10,000 women together to form a human pink ribbon. This year's campaign builds on a similar endeavor in 2010 that broke a Guinness World Record for the most women to gather in a single location at once. In 2010, text messaging, Blackberry Messenger (BBM) and Facebook were the main ways that the movement got out the word. But a quick glance at this year's website shows that Facebook, Twitter and Instagram will all be used this year. 2010 Assembly that broke a Guinness World Record   The movement this fall hopes to bring together 10,000 women, a significant step up from the 3,952 women that it attracted in 2010. And indeed, the new social platforms could give the campaign a much wider reach.   Compared to other countries, Princess Reema said that breast cancer detection is often detected later in deadlier stages, giving it a different stereotype than it has elsewhere.   "The reality that they see is they catch it at stage three and four, so all they see are women in pain, losing their hair," Princess Reema said. "What they see versus what [10KSA says are] two different realities, so how do we take this conversation of breast cancer, kick it up to be a mainstream conversation so we can get women catching themselves."   "We want to be a benchmark for how do we do an event like this or any event extremely well where we have a lasting impact—it can't be just about breaking the record," Princess Reema said.

Qatar Cancer Society launches ‘Think Again’ campaign

The Qatar Cancer Society (QCS) launched on Dec. 18, 2012 a campaign titled ‘Think Again’ to raise awareness and encourage women, especially young girls to go for vaccination against the human papillomavirus that causes cervical cancer.

The campaign is also an effort to curb the spread of the cancer, which is reportedly responsible for the death of a woman every one hour in the Middle East.

 ‘Think Again’ campaign further aims to dispel myths and misconceptions that currently surround cervical cancer and help women to make well-informed decisions about their health.

QCS chairman Dr Khalid bin Jabor al-Thani said at the press conference that Vaccination against cervical cancer virus is being encouraged from nine years in some countries where women marry early.  “Statistics show that cervical cancer is the second largest cause of female cancer mortality worldwide, accounting for the death of almost 288,000 women each year. The Middle East loses one woman every hour to cervical cancer,” he said. “For the screening and vaccination, we will be collaborating with a number of private hospitals in the country,” Dr Khalid al-Thani mentioned.

Also speaking at the press conference hosted by the Grand Hyatt Doha in support of the campaign, Obstetrics/Gynaecologist Dr Omar Abu Zainab explained that early vaccination against cervical cancer is the most effective means of preventing the disease adding that alongside regular screening, vaccination could reduce the risk of cervical cancer by up to 93%. The Grand Hyatt and QCS have partnered in organizing a ‘Run for Cure’ event earlier in October and which came on support of the global breast cancer awareness month.

FOCP discusses achievements in assisting cancer patients in UAE
Dec. 19, 2012.

Friends of Cancer Patients charity (FoCP) met on Tuesday with the heads of all health promotion charities functioning under the umbrella of the Sharjah Supreme Council for Family Affairs’ (SCFA) Health Promotion Department.  Held at the SCFA headquarters in Sharjah, the meeting aimed to provide an update on FoCP activities and its awareness campaigns, including the Pink Caravan as well as to encourage increased cooperation and collaboration between various charities operating under the SCFA.

H.E. Miss Ameera Bin Karam, president of the Board of Trustees and a founding member of the Friends of Cancer Patients charity (FoCP), delivered a presentation detailing the major milestones reached by FoCP since its establishment in 1999. She outlined FoCP’s efforts to help cancer patients in the UAE and the achievements made in this regard, in addition to FoCP’s efforts in spreading awareness among the community through well-targeted awareness campaigns.   “The achievements of FoCP to date would have been impossible without the aid and support of others such as the SCFA.”   Eman Rashid, head of Health Promotions at the SCFA, said: “The FoCP and its initiative the Pink Caravan have made tremendous efforts to promote their campaigns throughout the year with notable achievements and awards collected.”

The National Association for Cancer Awareness (NACA), Oman, go pink for October
Muscat, Oct 16, 2012.

Bin Mirza International (BMI) joined hands with the National Association for Cancer Awareness (NACA) during the month of October 2012 to help promote breast cancer awareness in the Sultanate. Specially crafted ‘pink ribbon’ cookies were created to support the cause and were sold at the Ninth Annual Cancer Awareness Walkathon. All proceeds made from the sale of the cookies will go directly to the Association.

Jannat Moosa, Marketing Director at Bin Mirza International said “The BMI family has joined the global fight against the disease by designing distinctive shirts to be worn by all our employees this month. We might not be able to find a cure, but we are able to raise awareness, reminding customers on the importance of testing and early detection. This is our way of showing solidarity and making a difference to the community we are part of.”   She added, “Our partnership with NACA is aligned with BMI’s responsibility to raise awareness on matters that concern our community.  We will continue to participate in charitable events focusing on the well-being of society through innovative activities involving staff members and our customers.”   With a deep commitment to the cause, BMI has also placed NACA donation boxes in all their outlets across Muscat.

Yemen launches cancer awareness and treatment campaign
Sanaa, July 9, 2012.

Yemen's National Cancer Control Foundation recently launched a fundraising and awareness campaign focused on cancer treatment and education regarding the disease's dangers, causes, and prevention methods.

The campaign, titled "Do not leave me to cancer", began June 28th and raised 360 million riyals ($1.7 million) during its first week, according to foundation officials.   The campaign includes arts activities and educational programmes in Sanaa and Aden, Taiz, Hodeidah, and Ibb provinces in response to the rising number of cancer cases in Yemen.   Dr. Ahmed Shamlan, the foundation's secretary-general, said the campaign will enable the foundation to care for cancer patients from various regions in Yemen for the fifth consecutive year.   "The foundation relies on these annual campaigns to raise funds and educate the community, officials and decision makers about the dangers of cancer," he told Al-Shorfa.   "Yemen has a higher number of cancer cases compared with other countries because of harmful practices such as smoking, as the majority of Yemenis are smokers," Shamlan said. "There is also a lack of awareness in the community about the need to act quickly when individuals are stricken with the disease."   The foundation received one billion riyals ($4.7 million) in financial support from the Ministry of Health, the private sector, business people, charitable organizations and the community at large in 2011, according to Shamlan.   The majority of the donations cover the costs of providing patients with free treatment, he said, and the remaining costs are split evenly between the foundation and patients.   The foundation provides free accommodations for patients coming from outside Sanaa through its affiliate "Dar al-Hayat".

Palliative Care Center e-Library

An e-library was established at Palliative Care Center in Kuwait on September 2012. The new e-library has an advanced hardware and software technology and has access to Kuwait Institute of Medical Education (KIME)-library and database. With the support of Cancer Aware Nation Campaign (Kuwait), it was established to help promote Continuing Medical Education (CME) and researches in palliative care.