Posted on: Fri 09-02-2024

The National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA) will enroll all Nigerians including cancer patients into the health insurance scheme, the permanent secretary of the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare, Daju Kachollom has said.

Speaking at a symposium organized by the ministry in collaboration with the National Institute for Cancer Research and Treatment (NICRAT), Kachollom said the prevalence of cancer is rising at an alarming rate.

The federal government, she said, remained deeply committed to the fight against the disease and has recorded significant strides.

She said, “It is estimated that over 124,000 new cases of cancer were recorded in Nigeria in the year 2020, which resulted in 78,899 deaths.

“The data highlight the gaps in our response, which is yet to address the challenges of late diagnosis and limited access to quality care.”

The Director General of the National Institute for Cancer Research and Treatment (NICRAT), Prof Usman Aliyu, said the theme of this year’s  World Cancer Day “Close the care gaps: Operationalizing the National Strategic Cancer Control Plan” underscores the urgent need to bridge the disparities in cancer care and treatment.

He said the country has made significant progress in raising awareness about the causes, symptoms, and prevention of cancer.