[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Languages
Last Updated: Saturday, 10 July, 2004, 05:30 GMT 06:30 UK
Bangladesh gets cancer hospital
By Waliur Rahman
BBC correspondent in Dhaka

Breast tumour image
Experts say 200,000 Bangladeshis suffer new cancers each year
Bangladeshi Prime Minister Khaleda Zia has laid the foundation stone of the nation's first fully-fledged cancer hospital in the capital, Dhaka.

The country has an estimated one million cancer patients and about 150,000 die each year.

According to medical experts, only 2% of patients have access to cancer units around the country.

The new $15m hospital will have an initial 160 beds, rising to 500 by the year 2007.

Experts say that every year, another 200,000 people develop some form of cancer - mostly lung cancer and leukaemia.

Most patients die without being properly diagnosed or receiving adequate medical treatment.

So the Dhaka Ahsania Mission undertook a project to set up the modern hospital in Dhaka.

"We aim to provide quality treatment to cancer patients, especially the poor ones," said Kazi Rafiqul Alam of the non-governmental organisation.

Treatment overseas

The hospital will have the latest technology, including medical, surgical and radiation oncology as well as a diagnostic centre for histopathology, endoscopy, colonoscopy and bronchoscopy.

Mr Alam said Bangladesh had no cancer hospital with the necessary equipment, except for the National Cancer Research Institute, which could treat only 50 patients at a time.

The affluent go to India and other south-east Asian countries for treatment.

"Cancer patients spend an estimated $83m annually for treatment abroad due to inadequate facilities in the country," Mr Alam said.

The cost for treatment in the Ahsania Mission hospital will be 20% less than any cancer hospital in India, he said.

The NGO has already started collecting money for the hospital through contributions from the public.

It launched an appeal through two national newspapers a few months back.


SEE ALSO:
Focus on Bangladesh arsenic risk
15 Feb 04  |  South Asia
India's 'five-star' hospitals
29 Sep 03  |  South Asia
Conjoined twins separated in Dhaka
26 Jun 03  |  South Asia
Dhaka tackles diarrhoea deaths
27 May 03  |  South Asia
Dhaka battles dengue crisis
14 Aug 02  |  South Asia


RELATED INTERNET LINKS:
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


PRODUCTS AND SERVICES

News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East | South Asia
UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature | Technology | Health
Have Your Say | In Pictures | Week at a Glance | Country Profiles | In Depth | Programmes
Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific