Kenyan scoops International award for anti-cancer fight .
Kenya Cancer Association vice chairman David Makumi is the winner of this year’s prestigious International Society of Nurses in Cancer Care Past President’s Award. He was honoured during the closing ceremony of the 17th international conference on cancer nursing in Prague, Czech Republic, on Thursday.
The award was for his contribution in advancing cancer care Kenya. Makumi dedicated the award to cancer survivors and activists, who have fought for the enactment of the cancer law. “I would like to dedicate this award to cancer survivors and cancer activists who have fought long and hard behind the scenes for the passage of the bill.”
His work in providing free breast cancer screening and health education at the Aga Khan University Hospital was singled out as a model that can be emulated by developing countries. The organisers of the conference that was attended by more than 600 delegates, lauded Makumi for enabling more than 15,000 women to undergo screening in the last 3 years.
The award is given to a cancer professional, who has initiated and sustained a cancer care programme in the third world. The acknowledgement is a boost to efforts to combat the cancer that is now the number three killer in Kenya. Makumi was recognized for his work in cancer advocacy, especially in lobbying for the passage and subsequent signing into law of National Cancer Prevention and Control Act 2012.
“My heart goes out to thousands of people] who lost the battle to cancer without seeing the cancer bill become law,” he said. Makumi is the first cancer caregiver from sub Saharan Africa to receive the award, having been honoured last year by the Oncology Society of the USA for his advocacy, public education and awareness campaigns. KCA is a non profit lobby group, and an umbrella body to cancer professionals, survivors and interested individuals who are involved in addressing the condition in Kenya.