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National Cancer Awareness Day 2023: Activities, Dates, History, FAQs, and Facts

Initiated in 1975, the National Cancer Control Program aimed to establish cancer treatment facilities throughout the nation.

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National Cancer Awareness Day 2023 Activities, Dates, History, FAQs, and Facts About cancer awareness

National Cancer Awareness Day 2023: India observes National Cancer Awareness Day on November 7. The day emphasizes to the general public the critical importance of heightened awareness regarding early detection and cancer prevention. Initiated in 1975, the National Cancer Control Program aimed to establish cancer treatment facilities throughout the nation. Annually, close to 1.1 million new cases are documented in India. The diagnosis of cancer at an advanced stage diminishes patients’ prospects of survival by two-thirds. Diverse initiatives have been launched to advance cancer prevention and early detection research.

National Cancer Awareness Day History

National Cancer Awareness Day was initially declared on November 7th, 2014, by Dr. Harsh Vardhan, the Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare of India. The purpose of this annual observance is to raise awareness regarding the importance of early detection of cancer and the need to abstain from adopting lifestyles that contribute to its development.

Achieving a state-of-the-art in cancer control, Harsh Vardhan promoted early detection and research into cancer treatments. Additionally, on National Cancer Awareness Day, individuals are encouraged to visit municipal clinics, CGHS, government hospitals, and CGHS for a complimentary screening. Additionally, information booklets are distributed to raise awareness regarding preventative measures against cancer and the identification of early warning signs. The National Cancer Control Programme, which aimed to establish cancer treatment facilities in India, was inaugurated in 1975. In 1984–1985, modifications were made to the program to emphasize early detection and prevention of cancer.

National Cancer Awareness Day is observed on November 7, which is also the date of Madame Curie’s Nobel Prize-winning scientist’s birthday. Marie Curie, who was born in Warsaw, Poland in 1867, is renowned for her groundbreaking investigations into radium and polonium, as well as her formidable impact on the battle against cancer. The advancement of nuclear energy and radiotherapy for the treatment of cancer was made possible by her contributions.

Annually, close to 1.1 million new cases are documented in India. In India, one woman is estimated to succumb to cervical cancer every eight minutes. In 2018, the use of tobacco (both smoked and smokeless) was responsible for 3,17,928 fatalities among men and women. Oral cavity and lung cancers are responsible for more than 25% of cancer-related fatalities in males, while breast and oral cavity cancers account for 25% of malignancies in females.
Presently, Dr. Harsh Vardhan opines that early cancer detection may result in treatment expenses that are a minuscule fraction of what are incurred for advanced-stage cancer. Additionally, the mortality rate is significantly reduced when individuals seek screening at the earliest signs of symptom emergence.

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FAQs for National Cancer Awareness Day

Does cancer prevalence rise in India?

The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that 1.16 million new cases of cancer were diagnosed in India in 2018. The WHO further states that one in every ten Indians will develop cancer in their lifetime, and one in every fifteen will succumb to the disease.

What is the total number of cancer patients in India?

The estimated cancer burden in India in 2018 is 1.16 million new cases, 784,800 cancer-related fatalities, and 2.26 million 5-year prevalent cases among the country’s 1.35 billion inhabitants, according to the World Cancer Report.

What is the meaning of breast cancer awareness?

Through education on the disease’s symptoms and treatment, breast cancer awareness aims to reduce the stigma associated with the disease and increase public consciousness.

Observing National Cancer Awareness Day: A Guide

Obtain a screening

Cancer detection in its early stages can save lives. Ensure that you schedule an appointment and undergo testing annually. The following cities offer cancer screening and detection services: Chandigarh, Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Bhilai, Bhopal, Bhubaneswar, Chennai, Dehradun, Delhi-National Capital Region, Lucknow, Ernakulam, Guwahati, Hyderabad, Lucknow, Ludhiana, and Indore; Kollam, Kottayam, Madurai, Mohali; Nagpur; Palakkad, Pathankot, Patna, Pondicherry; Sangli, Surat, Tirunelveli; and Trichy.

Inform family and acquaintances regarding early detection

The purpose of National Cancer Awareness Day is to educate loved ones about cancer prevention. To raise awareness about early warning signs and preventative measures against cancer, consult an online resource or distribute an information booklet.

Educate yourself on Marie Currie

National Cancer Awareness Day is annually observed on November 7 to commemorate the birth of Marie Currie. The physicist, whose brilliant contributions led to the development of nuclear energy and radiotherapy for the treatment of cancer, was born in 1867. Her scientific Nobel Prizes should not be overlooked.

Five fascinating cancer awareness facts

Cancer preventable statistics

70% of malignancies in India are attributed to preventable factors, according to experts; of these, tobacco-related factors account for 40%, infections for 20%, and other factors account for 10%.

Cancer and women in India

Cervical cancer claims the life of one woman in India every eight minutes. In India, the mortality rate from breast cancer is one woman per two newly diagnosed cases.

High rates of mortality

In India, nearly fifty percent of malignancies are identified at an advanced stage as a result of ignorance, illiteracy, fear, and taboos.

Cancer is a killer.

Globally, cancer claimed approximately 9.6 million lives in 2018, with India accounting for approximately 8.17% of this total.

Tobacco use elevates the risk of cancer.

The Lancet report on cancer ranks India as the second most lethal destination, trailing only cardiovascular disease. The report highlights that tobacco use constitutes a risk factor for fourteen distinct forms of cancer.


Year Date Day
2023 November 7 Tuesday
2024 November 7 Thursday
2025 November 7 Friday
2026 November 7 Saturday
2027 November 7 Sunday