- In 2020, cancer diagnoses fell by approximately 40% worldwide.
- UAE experts warn of a steady decline in people attending cancer screenings across the country due to fear of visiting medical facilities during the pandemic.
Dubai, United Arab Emirates – February 02 2021: This Gulf Cancer Awareness Week, a new national campaign, called New Normal, Same Cancer, is being launched in the United Arab Emirates by Friends of Cancer Patients (FoCP) and Emirates Oncology Society, in partnership with AstraZeneca, to ensure people across the UAE are accessing the cancer care they need in the wake of the pandemic.
The public awareness campaign calls on people to contact their doctor and prioritise a return to screening services and to also contact their doctors if they present with any possible cancer signs and symptoms as part of a nationwide effort to reprioritise cancer care.
The impact of COVID-19 means that people with a cancer diagnosis may have had reduced access to treatment; or their routine screening service may have been paused. Equally, people with possible cancer signs and symptoms are often not seeking help or being diagnosed as quickly as they would have been prior to the global pandemic. The impact on patient outcomes and, possible mortality on a global scale, is the driving force behind this important new campaign.
While cancer remains a devastating illness during the pandemic, in 2020, there has been an approximate 40% drop in patients being diagnosed with cancer globally. Research highlights that any interruption to the cancer care pathway can be detrimental to patient outcomes , so it is critical that people return to seek cancer care.