Roche Nigeria helps break world record for breast cancer awareness
Globally, breast cancer is the most common cancer to affect women and the stage at which a person is diagnosed can predict prognosis (the likely outcome of the disease). Life expectancy is much shorter for women who are diagnosed and treated at a late stage, once the disease has spread to other parts of the body (known as advanced or metastatic breast cancer). In low-to-middle income countries, including Nigeria, late-stage diagnosis and delayed treatment represent a significant problem, resulting from a lack of education and limited government funding for cancer care.
What we’re doing
In October 2015, Roche Nigeria partnered with the national patient organisation, Sebeccly Cancer Care, to organise the formation of the world’s largest ever human awareness ribbon. In the middle of the globally recognised Breast Cancer Awareness Month (BCAM), 7,500 people wearing pink congregated in Lagos stadium to beat the former world record of 6,800 people. In running this event, we aimed to promote breast cancer awareness in Nigeria, and to use this as a platform to push for improved conditions of care in Nigeria’s health institutions.
The campaign required considerable coordination both on the day and in the lead up to it. Social media activity helped make people aware of the challenge and motivate participation, all the while raising awareness of this deadly disease. The event itself attracted a lot of media attention with national reporters filming live from the assembly. The extensive media coverage that resulted from the campaign helped to spread important messages of breast cancer detection and care nationwide.