Developing a Health Advocacy
Lung cancer, the most common type of cancer (excluding skin cancer), accounts for about a third of all lethal cases caused by cancer, the effect which is observed in both women and men. In the United States of America the solemn figure amounts to 172 thousand cases a year on average. For men this index is being reduced, but for women the figure continues to grow.
The most alarming signal is frequent cases of non-small cell lung cancer detected in relatively young non-smokers. Smoking is the cause of 85-90% of cases of lung cancer, in other words, smokers develop cancer with frequency multiplied by the factor of 30 as compared to nonsmokers. Smoking cigars and pipes doubles the risk of lung cancer. Potentially, passive smoking increases the risk of lung cancer by 50%, but compared to active smoking the actual risk from passive smoking is small, because active smokers suffer from lung cancer twenty times more often than passive ones. Selecting a treatment strategy can be problematic since the numerous challenges and dilemmas get in the way instantaneously. Besides, economic analysis of every major treatment plan projected is obligatory. An advocacy campaign targeting the mentioned issue should take into account all mentioned factors and costs, and pay attention to existing legal provisions and limitations as well. Keywords: healthcare, program, advocacy, lung cancer.
Developing a Health Advocacy Program “Advocacy is always unapologetically purposive in its intent” (Chapman, 2007). According to the World Health Organization, (1995) an advocacy is a mixture of individual and social actions planned to advance political commitment, policy support, social recognition and systems support for a specific goal or program. Cancer is one item on the healthcare agenda of any country, the importance of which is constantly increasing. At present, medical knowledge reached such level that it is possible to prevent at least one third of all cases cancers, and to cure another part providing early diagnosis and adequate symptomatic treatment for other types of cancer. However, the implementation of this knowledge in practice for the effective fight against cancer requires the creation of an efficient health advocacy campaign. If cancer is diagnosed, a natural reaction to this is to find ways to treat it. However, an unreasonable or inefficient approach to this task, especially the approach involving the use of sophisticated and expensive methods and techniques, can lead to inappropriate selection of patients, the rapid depletion of scarce resources and to focusing of the main efforts on the irrelevant methods of prevention.
In order to select appropriate approaches and develop sustainable and properly working system of targeting and treating patients, the efficient health advocacy campaign should be in place and functioning smoothly.Facing the ProblemThe World Health Organization published the data demonstrating that the number of people in the world who are diagnosed with cancer annually has already exceeded 14 million. Smoking as a lifestyle and generally longer life rates among people also made their contribution to the perceived growth of cancer statistics. Lung cancer, …