Over the years, there has been an increase in cancer incidence the world over. Cancer has become one of the three leading causes of adult deaths in India and the team at ICF is dedicated to fighting the problem.
ICF organizes programs all year round to spread awareness regarding cancer, cancer detection, and treatment camps. Indian Institute of Head and Neck Oncology (IIHNO), its treatment facility works on the guiding principle of not denying treatment to a patient due to lack of funds.
The Indian Institute of Head and Neck Oncology, a flagship project of ICF, was set up in 1995 and it is gradually developing infrastructural facilities for the treatment of cancer patients. Currently, at the institute, cancer patients are offered radiotherapy and chemotherapy treatment. The institute also has a hospice for the care of terminally ill cancer patients, a Dharamshala, wards for post-operative care, and some diagnostic facilities. Till 31st December 2020, radiotherapy has been offered to 7476 patients of whom 1413 were given completely free treatment and partial charity was offered to 1969 patients.
In the year 2017, we set up a hospital-based cancer registry that as a first-ever, also records the cost of treatment incurred by patients.
Due to the Covid 19 pandemic, many changes had to be effected at the institute but we are proud of the fact that we hit the ground running and not a single day of treatment was lost due to the need to implement the SOP mandated due to the pandemic. This was possible because of the commitment and camaraderie of the institute staff.
Cancer surgery is performed off-campus, as the institute still does not have an operation theatre complex, and from the year 2000 till 31st December 2020 more than 3 236 free cancer surgeries have been performed.
Over the last 32 years, another important focus of our activities has been the organization of outreach programs, especially in the rural and far-flung areas of the region. We have held more than 227 free cancer camps in Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Rajasthan & Uttar Pradesh and examined more than a quarter-million people in the high-risk group. Of these 227 camps, 32 were free cancer surgery camps where more than 600 free cancer surgeries were performed.
We have held more than 220 free cancer awareness programs for the general public mostly in the rural areas and more than 200 training programs on early detection and palliative care for medical personnel, especially for doctors, nurses, and paramedical staff of the government health delivery system, the most extensive health services within the reach of the poorest of the poor in the remote areas of the country.