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Sunday 22 September 2019
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Women's groups laud TRHA breast surgery option

Secretary of Health Dr Agatha Carrington speaks on Monday at a press conference to launch two new health services.
Secretary of Health Dr Agatha Carrington speaks on Monday at a press conference to launch two new health services.

KINNESHA GEORGE-HARRY

Founder and chairman of Fibroid Awareness TT Korice AQ Nancis has praised the introduction of reconstructive breast surgery in Tobago.

On Monday, the first such surgery was done under the aegis of the Tobago Regional Health Authority (TRHA) at the operating theatre of the hospital in Signal Hill.

Lead surgeon Dr Rajen Rampaul, medical director at the Pink Hibiscus Breast Health Specialist Centre, on Monday said it was an exciting moment for the women of Tobago.

Speaking with Newsday on Tuesday, Nancis described the launch of the service as an excellent initiative.

“As founder of a women’s health advocacy organisation, I can appreciate the importance of awareness and choice in the healing process for any woman with a condition. Opening this centre, therefore, is an excellent and progressive decision. Giving women the choice and opportunity for greater access to breast reconstruction will not only be physically empowering but also emotionally. This centre has the potential to positively transform the lives of cancer survivors,” she said.

Founder and CEO of the Queening mentorship programme Kerrene Jerome said she truly appreciates the fact that quality of life has been taken into consideration.

“Often times we look at the physical scars, but the emotional scars of dealing with breast cancer must be heavily considered. As a result, I feel happy about the introduction of the reconstructive breast surgery for women diagnosed with cancer. This will assist with the restoration of a physical and emotional balance, allowing women to both look and feel great about themselves as they continue their day-to-day life,” she said.

Having lost her both parents in 2003 and 2007 and her mother to breast cancer, founder and CEO of Women of Worth Khadija Ali-Samhoul said the topic of cancer remains very dear to her heart.

“I am all-in and agree that it will help women regain their confidence and some level of normalcy.

"Breast reconstructive surgery helps restore physical and emotional balance. It can leave a woman feeling more conscious about her body after the surgical treatment of breast cancer, so yes, of course, I am in support of this initiative by the Division of Health,” she said.

TRHA CEO Sheldon Cyrus on Monday said the procedure being done in Tobago was "historic" and said it was "a major step forward for women who would have that type of surgery but may not want to have the breast removed completely, so its a major psychological advancement for our patients.”

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