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 Mr. D. S. Negi

CEO of Rajiv Gandhi Cancer Institute Urges Enhanced Cancer Care in Upcoming Budget

As India anticipates the 2024 Budget, Mr. D. S. Negi, CEO of Rajiv Gandhi Cancer Institute & Research Centre (RGCIRC), emphasizes the urgent need to reform cancer care across the nation. He advocates for prioritizing funding for advanced treatments, such as immunotherapy and personalized medicine, to ensure more patients have access to these cutting-edge therapies.

Mr. Negi highlights the necessity of extending the Ayushman Bharat scheme to include those aged above 70, recognizing the particular needs of senior citizens. However, he points out that the current coverage limit of Rs. 5 lakh is insufficient for critical illnesses like cancer, where treatment costs can range from Rs. 15-20 lakhs. He calls for an increase in the coverage limit for critical illnesses to provide adequate financial support for cancer patients.

Additionally, Mr. Negi stresses the importance of expanding screening programs for cancers such as cervical, breast, and colorectal, which can lead to earlier detection and improved treatment outcomes. He advocates for the construction of more specialized cancer treatment centers and enhanced training for healthcare workers as essential steps in strengthening the nation's cancer care infrastructure.

Public awareness campaigns about prevention and symptoms are also vital, according to Mr. Negi. These initiatives, combined with international collaborations and incentives for developing new cancer treatments, could significantly improve cancer care across the country.

Mr. Negi's recommendations reflect a comprehensive approach to addressing the complexities of cancer care in India, aiming to provide better support and treatment options for patients nationwide.

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