Breast cancer is the second most common malignancy among Nepalese women. Breast cancer places a substantial burden on the Nepalese healthcare system, but information regarding the number of women living with breast cancer is not well recorded. In countries with lower levels of resources such as Nepal, breast cancers are commonly diagnosed at late stages and women may receive inadequate treatment, pain relief or palliative care. Socioeconomic disparities and insufficient financial resources hinder prevention of breast cancer in Nepal.

Breast cancer is a substantial social and economic burden in Nepal. Prevention has been demonstrated to be among the most effective long-term strategies to lessen the increasing chronic disease burden. However, due to socioeconomic disparities and insufficient financial resources, to date, the prevention of breast cancer has not been well conducted in Nepal. As a developing nation, Nepal is faced with several challenges with regards to the care of patients with breast cancer with inadequate funding; the uneven distribution of resources and services; inadequate numbers, training and distribution of health-care personnel and equipment; and a lack of adequate care for many populations based on socioeconomic and geographic factors.

Since its establishment, UNMIRA NEPAL is running Breast Cancer Screening and Awareness screening program to poor and needy women. In Nepal, screening rates are low due to the lack of a regular screening system for breast and cervical cancers and preventive education, and there are many cases in which cancer has already progressed by the time of screening. These two cancers are the most common among women, accounting for 30% of all cancer-related mortality (WHO International Agency for Research on Cancer 2020). In recent years, the government of Nepal has also been developing cervical cancer screening and prevention programs and free screenings for breast cancer, but it has not reached adequate measures due to lack of human resources and funding.

In this project, we will expand screening services and improve resident knowledge about breast and cervical cancers through screening camps and public awareness activities in Tokha Municipality, Tarakeshwar Municipality, Budhanilkantha Municipality and Nagarjun Municipality in the Kathmandu district. Through this project, we hope to increase the number of people receiving cancer screenings and the rate of early detection of cancer. Early detected cases are being referred to government hospitals (Bhaktapur Cancer Hospital and Thapathali Maternity Home) for further diagnosis and treatment. All programs data have been kept in special cancer screening software of the organization.

Fiscal Year Target Screening Number Total Screened Number Total Municipality Coverage Total Ward Coverage
2079/80 3000 2545 2 13
2080/81 10000

We believe that these activities will contribute to the achievement of Goal 3 “ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages” of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).