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‘Cancer has increased! We need to go out & do our tests’- Gloria A. Fahie

- Cancer Society President laments recent diagnosis in ‘preventable’ cancers
President of the BVI Cancer Society Ms Gloria A. Fahie has noted the increase of cancer diagnosis in the Virgin Islands. Photo: VINO/File
From left: President of the BVI Cancer Society, Gloria A. Fahie; Treasurer, Sylvia C. Moses and Member, Sarai O. Smith on The Big Show on JTV Channel 55 on October 6, 2020.. Photo: VINO
From left: President of the BVI Cancer Society, Gloria A. Fahie; Treasurer, Sylvia C. Moses and Member, Sarai O. Smith on The Big Show on JTV Channel 55 on October 6, 2020.. Photo: VINO
ROAD TOWN, Tortola, VI- "Right now as I sit here I am so very sad, sad that we are always in the public giving information on talks on the radio stations, on talks on social media and you know this morning (Monday) I was told that five persons have been diagnosed with colon cancer, late stages, and this is a cancer that can be prevented, all you have to do is go to the doctor and do your colonoscopy."

This is according to President of the BVI Cancer Society Ms Gloria A. Fahie last night, October 6, 2020, while a guest on JTV's The Big Story with host Cathy O. Richards. 

The discussion was at the time about the observance of Breast Cancer Awareness Month being observed worldwide; however, emphasis was also placed on other forms of cancers prevalent in the Virgin Islands (VI).

"Among the growing population, cancer has increased, it has doubled, and it has increased by forty percent and that is a big percent and that means that we need to be proactive, we need to go out and do our tests."

According to Ms Fahie, among the tests that persons should ensure they get done are mammograms, sonograms, CEA blood test, tumor markers tests, colonoscopy, "Whatever tests are out there we need to check ourselves," the cancer survivor stressed.

‘Heightened conversations needed’- Sarai O. Smith

One of the young members of the BVI Cancer Society, Ms Sarai O. Smith said she strong feels there's a need for heightened conversations among her peers.

"It’s important to get those conversations going educating us on early detection, doing our tests at home or going out at getting our appointment to ensure we get those tests done."

‘Older men don’t like to go to the doctor’- Sylvia C. Moses

While the number of new cases of various cancers continue to spiral among the young population, Treasurer of the BVI Cancer Society, Ms Sylvia C. Moses spoke to the challenges of getting the older men to improve their health seeking behaviours as they too are among a growing population of emerging cancer cases in the territory, "Even our older generation, older men in particular we need to ensure that they do their colonoscopy very early on, as early as possible, 50 [years old]."

Speaking about the experience of her own father who was diagnosed with colon cancer at the age of 77,  Ms Moses said, "What we have come to realise is that the older men, for whatever reason, they don’t like to go to the doctor."

"We need to bring that awareness, we need to bring that information to them that they must get their medicals done and keep their medical appointments," Moses said.

15 Responses to “‘Cancer has increased! We need to go out & do our tests’- Gloria A. Fahie”

  • Hmm (07/10/2020, 12:56) Like (7) Dislike (2) Reply
    When we openly say how sad we are what do we really do to help those people well I must say cancer Society because I have come across few person that have asked for assistance give all their personal information something that is very hard for anyone in that situation only to be told only when they pay a bill they would be reimbursed and to my knowledge if someone ask for assistance it means they don’t have it at the moment notice. However it’s not my job to tell anyone how to run their Organisation but you can’t pay a bill before hand and I do believe if your asking the public to trust you to collect donations on behalf of cancer people with cancer I think it’s fare that you can trust a cancer victim with a check with your knowledge of their written diagnosis.

    Not because someone may ask for finical assistance means you have to be 100% up in their medical treatment or situations and we have to learn to respect that aspect of things I am making this statement because of 1 family members I know for a fact that went thought this when asked for assistance to protect their privacy I would not call name.
  • Wrong attitude. (07/10/2020, 13:41) Like (7) Dislike (0) Reply
    The prevention of cancer doesn’t start with early detection.

    It starts with lifestyle decisions. Do you want an increased chance of cancer or do you chose a healthy (high vegetable/low meat/low fat/ no fast food). Do you want to be a cancer developing couch potato or do you actively try to avoid cancer by being in shape?

    The cancer society should know better than to advocate only for early detection.
  • tretretrete (07/10/2020, 14:18) Like (3) Dislike (3) Reply
    Things to make you go hmmm! We have a running tally in the entire Region and Globally showing COVID cases when COVID is no match for Cancer, but no tally, no data, no numbers, no statistics being posted about Cancer to raise awareness? The same effort to push fear into people about wearing masks to avoid COVID should be pushed for important things that are killing our people off like diabetes, hypertension, cancers etc. When will we realize that none of this hoopla is about healthy living but for control? If they cared about our health why isn't more information readily available? Why aren't we hearing health officials and medical professionals say "Cancer isn't playing with us so we cannot play with Cancer!"? Say the same for Diabetes?
  • lol (07/10/2020, 16:15) Like (1) Dislike (1) Reply
    On the rise? or all the people who had no care during lockdowns only now getting to go to the doctor and do their tests? and late at that?
  • WHAT!!!! (07/10/2020, 17:58) Like (3) Dislike (1) Reply
    What the h••• you expect.STOP open burning ar West End, GET the scrubber for the waste plant.
    • jimmy (09/10/2020, 05:20) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      Nothing send shock waves through this territory. The ignorance is Bliss.
  • E. Leonard (07/10/2020, 18:01) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
    A 40% increase in cancer is alarming and should send shock waves through out the territory. The VI boast as having one of the highest per capita income($34,000), standard of living and quality of life in the region. But is it atop the heap in regards to healthy living and health? In addition to cancer, there seems to be alarming increases in chronic diseases, high blood pressure( hypertension, pressure), diabetes( sugar).........etc. Is its diet, lifestyle, food, lack of preventative care, environmental factors.........etc driving up the incidences of these diseases? Consequently, Hon Carvin Malone( AtL), Minister of Health and Social Development, should commission a comprehensive study on health in the VI. In the interim, he should launch a public education and outreach programme on the importance of testing, preventative medicine......etc. To my fellow Virgin Islanders, it is ok and good for your personal health and well-being to see your doctor when you are feeling well, not just when you are in crisis. Doing so is in you and your family and in the national interest. A healthy populace is a healthy and growing territory.
    • Ole Timer (07/10/2020, 21:42) Like (3) Dislike (0) Reply
      Our diet is causing most of these diseases. Back in the day, we ate fresh fish, fresh beef, mutton and pork, fresh chicken, drank fresh cow milk, ate fresh grown provision......etc, not the muck we eating today. We didn’t have all the can and package processed foods. Plus we walk almost everywhere getting plenty of physical exercise. Obese people were rare. Though technology enhance our lives, it is killing us and literally. If we don’t take stock, things will get worse. We need to definitely find out what is causing all these diseases. Government needs to get on the ball.
      • Almost (08/10/2020, 02:58) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
        You are almost right, but fish is polluted these days and studies clearly show meat is not good for you either.
  • my thoughts (07/10/2020, 19:50) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
    More stress Ms. Fahie
  • cost (08/10/2020, 04:09) Like (6) Dislike (0) Reply
    the problem alot of us face are the super high costs of the doctor visit.... nhi only cover so much and co pay for something like a colonoscopy can be as high as 1200 usd . how can some of these clnics charge so much when hospital is so much less.
    i know you cant put a price on health...bit in reality.....if you dont have the money spare, what can you do.?
    i think there should be a big drive by government to encourage people to us the hospital facilities rather than go to the private cinics......this would cut the nhi spending down because the cllnics take full advantage of every cent they can get their hands on
    • @ cost (08/10/2020, 07:29) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
      You're absolutely correct. With unemployment and underemployment at an all time high people are choosing to self medicate because they just simply can't afford to go to a doctor. A colonoscopy is necessary for persons over 50 or earlier if you have a family history with the disease. But the ordinary Joe Blow can't I repeat can't afford this test. When we are just trying to keep our heads above the water. I for one can't afford it.
  • Diaspora 3-D/360 (08/10/2020, 06:14) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
    “In the interim, he should launch a public education and outreach programme on the importance of testing, preventative medicine......etc.”—-E. Leonard. Agree. The VI has a health insecurity issue. Currently, the territory is an all hands on deck effort to prevent, contain, and mitigate Coronavirus (Covid-19), a deadly, infectious and contagious disease. That all out effort against the Covid-19 pandemic is warranted. Nonetheless, the same level of effort must be wage against non-communicable diseases, eg, diabetes, high blood pressure, asthma, heart problems.........etc. Good health and wellness is quality of life and national productvity issue. Poor health and lack of wellness adversely impacts the workforce, economy and small health system.

    Moreover, one of the main factors contributing to the BVI poor health and national health insecurity is diet. The territory imports over 70% of its food and most of the food is not highly nutritious. It is highly processed and high in calories, sugar, sodium and fat. It is highly believed that these highly processed and low nutritious food may be contributing to the diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity, cardiovascular issues..........etc. Government has a key role to play in the nation’s wellness.
  • study the word (08/10/2020, 21:35) Like (0) Dislike (1) Reply
    it never did when anyway it was also in quarantine , and its must because the more lies been told on the pulpits in Churches goverment the more cancer spirit reign, script says that every lier is a murderer ,repent , its time to speak truth accept truth and live right Jesus christ is coming
  • ausar (10/10/2020, 10:00) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply

    Truly an indictment on the constant stress our bodies have been made to suffer due to "stay-at-home" policies thay kept many of us from moving actively!

    The shut down has caused many, who would have gone to other locales for checkups,to be qurantined at home.

    Can our people achieve competent health care here, in the same manner as they would, say, in America?

    This is the lingering concern that has kept many from accessing and receiving competent care!

    Truly Sad!

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