Sachin Tendulkar inaugurates AIG India's Gastrointestinal and Liver Foundation, Hyderabad
Group of Doctors lead by Dr.D Nageshwar Reddy MD, DM, DSc, FAMS, FRCP, FASGE, FACG, Asian Institute of Gastroenterology and Dr.Prateek Sharma MD, Professor of Medicine in the Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Director of the Fellowship Training Program at the University of Kansas School of Medicine, Kansas City, MO starting a Gastrointestinal and Liver Foundation for Research & Treatment of Cancers. The reason for starting this is worldwide, cancer is the second leading cause of deaths accounting for nearly 12.5% of all deaths in 2001. Deaths from cancer worldwide are projected to continue rising, with an estimated 12 million deaths in 2030. Cancer of the digestive system accounts for a large proportion of cancer deaths. As a group, digestive cancers (colon, esophagus and stomach, liver, pancreas), has the highest incidence and mortality annually of all cancers worldwide. According to the figures from the American cancer society, there were approximately 275 thousand new cases of digestive cancers 140 thousand deaths in the USA in the year 2010 with digestive cancers accounting for 25% of all cancer deaths (Cancer facts and figures).
There are limited data on the incidence of cancer deaths in India. However, several past studies have pointed towards a growing number of incident cancers in the country. According to the 2005 publication of the National Cancer Registry Programme in Bangalore which is based on the survey of hospitals and private clinics, India may have some of the highest cancer rates in the world (BMC publication). Gastric, esophageal and pancreatic cancers are on the rise. However, there is limited information on the incidence and prevalence of various digestive cancers.
The need for a cancer foundation:
About 40% of the cancers are preventable (WHO). To work towards a goal of reducing digestive cancer morbidity and mortality one of the key steps involves the accurate estimation of burden of disease. Furthermore, there are several areas of work that need to be performed in order to achieve a reduction in digestive cancer morbidity and mortality:
• To estimate the true incidence and prevalence of digestive cancers
• To collect and disseminate the up to date information regarding prevention and treatment of digestive cancers to patients
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• To educate law-makers and the media on the true burden of digestive cancers to the society
• To educate and train physicians at all levels to enhance their knowledge of current medical prevention and treatment of digestive cancers
• To provide adequate grants to researchers
• To create practice guidelines based on up-to-date literature Mission Statement:
The Indian Foundation for Digestive Cancer is the nationwide, non-profit health organization dedicated to eliminating digestive cancer as a major health problem by preventing cancer, saving lives, and diminishing suffering from cancer, through research, education, advocacy, and service.
Activities of the Research Foundation:
1. Practice Guidelines
The Indian Foundation for Digestive Cancer is dedicated to improving the quality and effectiveness of care provided to patients with cancer. IFDC will create a panel of experts in the field of digestive cancers to review current literature and publish guidelines in association with international cancer organizations.
2. Public Policy
IFDC’s public policy resources are available to help digestive cancer specialists and the public remain current on issues that have a substantial impact on the cancer community. The Society’s advocacy programs are designed to educate the law-makers, the media, and the general public about the effects of legislation on the ability of digestive cancer specialists to provide high-quality cancer care.
3. Research Initiatives
Digestive Cancer research is at the core of the IFDC mission. Each year, IFDC will hold meetings to attract abstracts representing the latest in clinical and translational research in the areas of cancer prevention, diagnosis, and treatment. This research helps to set the standard for cancer care in India.
4. Patient Information
The Cancer Foundation will support educational programs of the highest quality in digestive cancer care and prevention; facilitate the dissemination of information about cancer and cancer treatment to patients and their families
a. Improve digestive cancer literacy
b. Provide trusted patient information in the form of:
i. Educational videos
ii. Hand outs
iii. Web-based interactive information
IFDC is committed to supporting the lifelong learning of digestive cancer specialists and will develop resources to enhance the professional development of members across the continuum of their medical education. This will be achieved through:
a. Enhance training at various levels (medical college, residency and super specialization)
b. Providing educational resources
c. Providing guidelines for curriculum & training
d. Resources to physicians to develop research skills by:
i. Publishing educational books
ii. Providing web-based resources
iii. Conducting workshops
iv. Providing mentorship programs to new and upcoming physician researchers
e. Holding annual scientific meetings
f. Providing access to latest journals and abstracts
g. Web-based seminars and workshops as part of continuing medical education
6. Awards and Grants
The foundation will provide competitive grants to research scientists to enhance our understanding of digestive cancer prevention and treatment. The Cancer Foundation Grants & Awards Program will provide unique research and educational opportunities to digestive cancer specialists around the world at all stages of their careers to honor its commitment to supporting and recognizing high-quality clinicians and researchers.
a. High quality care to everyone everywhere
b. Programs to improve access to undeserved areas