THE Malaysian Oncological Society (MOS) launched its second Hope Handbook recently, which provides comprehensive information for cancer caregivers, dispelling many of the common misconceptions and fallacies surrounding cancer and cancer care.
The launch of the handbook was part of an ongoing initiative by the society, in partnership with Pfizer Malaysia, to raise awareness.
The first Hope Handbook was published as a resource guidebook for cancer patients on diagnosis, treatment and management of cancer.
“Today, we see the fruition of our second Hope Handbook, which is the result of many months of hard work put in by the various stakeholders.
“This second handbook is published for caregivers and aims to achieve objectives similar to our first publication, that is, continued education and awareness,” MOS president Datuk Dr Mohd Ibrahim Wahid said.
“The difference is we now rope in the support circle of family and friends, which is a critical target group. The caregivers role is as important for the patient’s recovery as the therapy,” Dr Ibrahim said.
“The programme as a whole is aimed at providing information relating to cancer to help patients, caregivers, the public and healthcare professionals make informed decisions about screening, early detection and treatment of cancer.
“The various projects for the Hope Programme include the Handbooks, educational articles on cancer and educational programmes for healthcare professionals.
The society’s official website also has information on Hope and has a portal for public enquiries,” he added.
Pfizer (M) Sdn Bhd managing director Ahmet Genel said the collaboration was part of the company’s commitment to playing an active role in the community.
“Pfizer is committed to the research and development of innovative treatment options to improve the outlook for cancer patients worldwide.
As a part of the launch, Dr Albert Lim of MOS gave a presentation on cancer myths.
“One of the things I hear most often from patients is about the various food taboos that they have. No sugar, no meat, no white rice.
“I ask them — how do you fight the cancer if you do not have proper nutrition?” he said.
Following this, Dr Ahmad Kamal of MOS spoke about the Crucial Role of Caregivers.
During the launch, guests were also enthralled by a specially choreographed dance by Ramli Ibrahim.
The symbolism of the dance was that out of despair and entanglement comes the embrace of optimism, faith and a brighter future.
The dancers moved as metaphors of phases of life, coming to terms with illness and overcoming a bleak situation with Hope.
The Hope Handbook for Cancer Caregivers will be distributed through oncology clinics, cancer support groups and through the society’s official website, www.malaysiaoncology.org.
The public may also pose questions relating to cancer on the website.
These questions will be answered by members of the society.