The Psycho-Social Department, at The Indus Hospital (TIH) celebrated Childhood Cancer Survivors’ Day on August 11, 2018. TIH organizes the event annually to highlight the cancer journey of patients; to create awareness regarding childhood cancer among patients and the community; to recognize the incredible determination and resolve of their caregivers who fight bravely to save the lives of their children; to express solidarity with families going through the ordeal; and to appreciate dedicated medical practitioners, healthcare professionals, volunteers and supporters for their support.
Dr. Abdul Bari Khan, Chief Executive Officer, IHN, also addressed the event and thanked the donors for their generous support.
Dr. Shamvil Ashraf, Executive Director, Medical Services, the Indus Health Network and founder of the pediatric oncology services at TIH said that around 1000-1200 children in Karachi are diagnosed with cancer every year.” He further said, “Early diagnosis and timely treatment can help children in fighting the deadly disease.”
Pediatric Oncology patients; cancer survivors; their caregivers; friends of Indus; celebrities; faculty and IHN board members attended the event.
The event was attended by over 50 long-term survivors of childhood cancer, many of whom are accomplished professionals today. One such survivor was Ms. Sabica Kulsoom, who hosted the event, is heading a finance and audit organization. At the end of her speech, she said “Now my statement is truly justified that cancer is a blessing for me. It changed every……cancer gave me strength to live a happier and more energetic life. I did all this because I think we as cancer survivors are stronger than others.”
The Survivors’ Day event featured a touching display of gratitude by the survivors for the healthcare professionals who helped them fight their illness, including doctors and nurses, as well as support teams such as housekeeping, nutrition and food services, drivers, and other hospital staff.
The tearjerker of the evening was an activity highlighting glimpses of the cancer journey by survivors of all ages, with emotional messages such as “I used to be scared of nurses. Now they are my friends,” “Being repeatedly poked and prodded by cannulae to find a good vein hurt too much,” “Chemo felt like fire flowing through my veins,” and “I felt as if I was swinging between life and death.”
The event was brought to a close by launching Indus Hospital’s anthem for pediatric oncology patients, with lyrics penned by Sadia Hareem and brought to life by Ustaad Sajjid Ali Khan with a take home message that cancer in children is curable and it is a fight all of us have to fight together.
About The Indus Health Network (IHN)
In the year 2007, The Indus Hospital (TIH) started as a 150 bed, state-of-the-art, tertiary healthcare facility providing quality treatment free of cost to every patient. After widening the scope of work, the hospital has turned into the Indus Health Network (IHN). The network is focusing on the development and management of various public and private hospitals throughout Pakistan. The network is also carrying out Malaria, AIDS and TB outreach programs in the country.