Breast cancer message still not getting through

A WOMAN has called on a government minister to help fight breast cancer in the borough.

Bukky Oshikoya, of Ballogrie Avenue, Neasden, is leading a campaign, on behalf of charity Breakthrough Breast Cancer, to raise awareness in Brent of the importance of screening.

The volunteer, who nearly lost her mum to the disease, met up with childrens and families minister and Brent Central MP Sarah Teather to call on her to pressure the government into getting the NHS to play a bigger role.

Miss Oshikoya said information should be more prominently displayed in the community - particularly in doctor’s surgeries and aimed at ethnic minorities, and routine screening should be extended to women over the age of 73.

She said: “I think some residents in Brent do not take up the invitation to be screened because they are ill-informed on breast awareness and some indeed view it as a taboo subject due to religious and ethnic backgrounds.

“Providing information in local languages in the PCT at Wembley, libraries and in other surgeries in Brent could help towards solving this problem.”

In 2008 12,100 people died from breast cancer of which 99 per cent were woman, according to cancer research.

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Sarah Teather, who is a member of Cancer Research, said: “Breast cancer is a real and growing risk for women in the UK, with the latest statistics suggesting that 1 woman in every 8 is at risk of getting breast cancer over the course of their lifetimes.

“I have today written to Mark Easton, the Chief Executive of Brent Primary Care Trust, asking him to support breakthrough breast cancer’s campaign to raise awareness of the signs of breast cancer and to increase the number of women who regularly check their breasts.”