I experienced the feeling of glory and honor while participating in a health related program in the UK. The program was held at the Parliament House, London and UK University till 16 days. The program created harmonious environment among people from all countries and inspired us to do something with the global citizens’ combined effort.
The program’s proposal expressed that the aim of program was to earn opportunity by taking local action to increase global sustainability, connected with different countries’ delegates and collaborate to scale project and ideas. I was selected from among 6,000 applicants from different parts of the world. The opportunity provided me a platform to represent my country in an international arena amid 79 different nations. I had a good experience sharing the health problems in Nepal.
I interacted with different speakers, delegates from different parts of the countries. I met business personalities, journalists, and Mandy Sanghera (a human rights activist) in Media City BBC, Manchester. Mandy encouraged me much and she gave me a contact address that could help me for my project. We went Cap Gemini, world’s largest companies in all over 40 countries (IT services, IT consulting) to share our ideas and get feedback for our project. We also met Lord Mayor, Council Chamberin Town Hall Liverpool. I met Bernie Hollywood (social entrepreneur, adventurer, renowned speaker, author, filmmaker and inventor) and I got inspired by him; being a British citizen he is helping developing nations.
I made many good friends and we exchanged our native cultures, traditions, and the conditions of health technology in our respective countries. I got to know that UK’s palliative care has been ranked as the best in the world. In 2005-09 cancer survival rates lagged ten years behind the rest of Europe, although survival rates continue to increase. In developed countries, I found that cancer patients get mental treatment in the case theyare suffering from depression or anxiety. They are conscious about their health.
But we are facing many health problems in Nepal because approximately two-third of health problems in Nepal. Millions of people are at risk of infection and thousands of them die of mental anxiety every year or depression of cancer and health related events which particularly affect the poor living in rural areas. Cancer cases are increasing day by day.
According to a study, cancer patients are increasing from 2003 to 2011 and the number has become double in 2011. Among the total population, 45 percent males and 55 percent females are suffering from different types of cancers. The number of cancer is becoming a major problem in Nepal. At the same time, mental disorder is increasing in cancer patients day by day in Nepal.
Till now, we don’t have any accurate data on mental health related to cancer patients that means no one is interested in doing research regarding mental health of cancer patients. However, according to senior doctors, 50 percent – 60 percent cancer stricken people are suffering from depression and anxiety.
The economic burdens associated with mental disorder exceed four other non-communicable diseases associated to each other: cancer, diabetes, chronic respiratory diseases and cardiovascular diseases. With a low per capita income $600 (£420), the majority of Nepal’s people are bound to struggle to afford expensive cancer treatment personally in the absence of proper health insurance system. In the same time, cancer patients are suffering from mental disorder because they lose hope for life.
But lack of mental health program, awareness program, ignorance about diseases, considering disease as an ‘incurable one’, it’s high cost of treatment, numerous cancer patients choose to commit suicide in Nepal but that is not the solution. Cancer patients’ suicidal trend is a big problem in here. The patients with untreated depression or anxiety are less likely to take their cancer treatment. Motivation is highly required in this field as in other spheres.
At the last day, we went Parliament House, London where we presented pitch. That day, I realized that if we do hard work, we surely get success in our life. We several international buddies were made close friends. At last, when the time came to say goodbye, I really felt shocked and sorry for friends’ words and their letters were heart touching.
Right now, I am committed to implement a project in Nepal about mental wellbeing for cancer patients and other developing countries in the future. What I think is that the current focus on cancer treatment should only be on preventive measures but it also should be to treat the resultant impact on mental health and other general well-being of the patients.
Many cancer patients are deprived of healthcare because of their poor economic status. So, my aim is to save cancer patients and give them good quality healthcare. General wellbeing brings quality in life. I hope my endeavor aligns with my aim to stop the ongoing brain drain from our nation.
Terisa is studying BSc second year at Tribhuvan University.