SBI Life takes Thanks A Dot to rural India to encourage self-breast examination
The initiative is to encourage early detection of Breast cancer. The drive was supported by the Women’s Cancer Initiative -Tata Memorial Hospital & the sarpanch of the village
On World Health Day, SBI Life Insurance, one of the most trusted life insurance companies of the country, organised ‘Thanks A Dot’, a breast cancer awareness drive in Sonepat, Haryana.
Research indicates that 1 in 3 women in rural India have not heard of the deadly disease and as many as 90 per cent of them are unaware of the possibility of self- breast examination. For this purpose, the insurer organised a workshop conducted by breast cancer survivor and motivational speaker, Sujaya Walia, for the rural women to explain the risks of breast cancer, educate them on the benefits of self-examination and empower them to be self-prepared.
More than 60 women along with a few men of the village attended the workshop and all of them received the ‘Thanks-A-Dot’ kit free of cost.
Studies indicate that the average age of breast cancer in India is almost a decade lower than in the west. One of every two woman newly diagnosed with breast cancer doesn’t survive in India. Also, out of 2,000 women detected with cancer, 1,200 were diagnosed at a late stage. This means it reduces the first-year survival rate by 3 to 17 times for breast and cervical cancer.
Taking the initiative to the rural interiors, Ravindra Sharma, Chief of Brand & Corporate Communications, SBI Life Insurance said, “Breast cancer is most common in women and can be cured if detected at an early stage. Most women in rural areas neglect their health and delay in seeking medical advice early because of unawareness, illiteracy, myths or superstition and many a times, due to financial constraints. It is imperative for these women to have deeper understanding and awareness of the symptoms of this disease. Therefore, we took ‘Thanks-A-Dot’ initiative to the rural interiors to create awareness and encourage every woman to spur a positive conversation about self-breast examination among each other and get away with sense of hesitation.”
He further added, “Women are custodians of family health, playing a critical role in maintaining the health and well-being of their communities. In other words, healthy women will ensure healthy families, healthy communities and a healthy nation. As a responsible life insurer, we believe that we have an important role to play in educating and empowering women by increasing awareness towards the disease and we hope that ‘Thanks-A-Dot’ can bring about the necessary change in the attitude of the women towards their health.”
Neelam, Sarpanch, Sersa Gaon, Haryana said, “In our society, nobody pays attention to women’s health and moreover, women in our community ignore their health problems. Very often women don’t report their medical issues to the family or doctors because of lack of awareness and sense of hesitation in discussing their health issues. SBI Life’s ‘Thanks-A-Dot’, have given us the right direction to be educated towards what a lump feels like and how to self-examine to detect the early signs of breast cancer which is plaguing our society. I urge all the women in the villages to take the self- breast examination and be health conscious.”
Rajiv Dingra, Founder and CEO, WATConsult said, “Recent studies indicate that 1 in 3 women in rural India have not even heard of breast cancer and unfortunately, 90% of them are unaware of the possibility of self- breast examination. This clearly highlights the lack of awareness in these areas and the need for women in rural India to understand the nuances of breast cancer, the prevention methods and the necessary steps to be taken. With Thanks a Dot, we reached out to a village in Haryana to initiate the positive conversation around breast health.”
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