Today, the World Health Day 2023 is being observed across the globe with the theme "Health For All." Indeed, good health is the real treasure, if we are healthy, we can do anything. The 7th of April every year is dedicated as World Health Day to highlight the importance of maintaining good health and raise awareness about health issues affecting people all over the globe. On this occasion, we would like to draw your attention to some of the major health-related issues facing India as well as things that are needed to be done urgently to improve healthcare in the country and achieve the goal of "Health For All."
Every patient should have access to comprehensive quality healthcare
"As we celebrate World Health Day and its theme of 'health for all,' it reminds us of the urgent need to ensure that every patient in the country has access to comprehensive quality healthcare," said Dr. Lohith G Reddy, Consultant Radiation Oncologist, Clinical lead Radiomics & AI in cancer, Clinical Director Immuno RAD, HCG Hospital, Bengaluru.
Dr. Reddy emphasized the need to focus on cutting-edge technologies in cancer care.
He stated, "Cancer treatment is evolving in India, mainly in tier 2 and tier 3 cities. Hence, the scalability of technology in cancer care becomes essential for providing continuous care while keeping the highest standards across all geographies. In cancer care, enhancing primary prevention through effective screening and early diagnosis would be a practical approach. Screening has been shown to boost overall survival by spotting cancer in its early stages and placing it under the proper form of treatment. Patient-centric, precision approaches with cutting-edge technologies like radiation therapy, Artificial Intelligence, etc. need to be given strong emphasis and in turn with the implementation of value-based healthcare and hence the goal of achieving "Health for all."
Need to increase awareness about cancer
"Cancer is a word, not a sentence. This quote by John Diamond is a reminder that a cancer diagnosis can be overwhelming and frightening, but it does not have to define the rest of your life. With proper treatment, support, and a positive outlook, many cancer patients are able to overcome this disease and lead fulfilling lives," noted Dr. Shuchin Bajaj, Founder & Director Ujala Cygnus Group of Hospitals.
World Health Day is a time to raise awareness about cancer prevention, early detection, and treatment, and to support those who are currently battling this disease, he added.
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"A healthy lifestyle is a journey, not a destination"
Health should be everyone's top priority This is the message Sujata Pawar, Co-founder and CEO of Avni, wants to spread on this day.
She said, "Today, we celebrate the importance of good health and well-being for people all around the world. At Avni, we believe that a healthy lifestyle is a journey, not a destination. It requires consistent effort, but the rewards are priceless. Let's take a moment to appreciate our bodies and minds and commit to making positive changes that will benefit us for years to come. Together, let's make health a top priority and work towards a healthier and happier world for all."
Access to healthcare should be a fundamental right
Mayank Arya, Co-founder at Yes Madam, has urged people to promote health equity and drive change toward building healthier and more equitable societies.
He stated, "In the uncertain times we find ourselves in, it is imperative that we ponder on the essence of World Health Day and drive change toward building healthier and more equitable societies. As a tech-enabled platform for home salon and wellness, it's our ardent belief that access to healthcare at one's doorstep is not merely a privilege but a fundamental right, and we all must aspire to champion this cause through collective efforts. Health, in all its dimensions, entails not just physical well-being but also mental health, which we deem to be equally important. We also propose the inclusion of Stress and Pain Management through SPA therapy as a holistic measure to mitigate the adverse effects of contemporary lifestyles without relying on medication. Moreover, we firmly believe that optimal health is pivotal to reducing Counterproductive Work Behavior and cultivating a thriving and sustainable work environment. On this World Health Day, we urge all to heed the clarion call for health equity and embark on a journey towards a healthier and happier tomorrow."
There is no health without mental health
Shivangi Sagar, Counselling Psychologist, Co-founder, HopeQure, commented, "As we approach World Health Day, we are reminded of the significant impact that mental health has on our overall well-being. As WHO says, there is no Health without Mental Health, and Mental health is more than the absence of mental disorders. Mental health is an integral part of health, and we must acknowledge that the stress, anxiety, depression and isolation experienced by so many individuals over the past couple of years have taken a toll on their mental health."
According to Lancet Study, depressive and anxiety disorders saw an increase of 35 per cent and it evaluated an additional 76.2 million cases of anxiety disorders and 53.2 million more cases of depressive disorders in 2020 due to the pandemic.
"At HopeQure, we are committed to empowering individuals to take control of their mental health through personalized and evidence-based counselling. We believe that by fostering a culture of openness and support, we can help create a healthier and more resilient world for everyone," Shivangi added.
Need to address the underlying inequalities and systemic barriers
Speaking to TheHealthSite on the occasion of World Health Day, Rachita Kasliwal, Co-Founder of Medyseva, also highlighted that good health is not a privilege reserved for a select few; but a fundamental human right that must be accessible to all.
She asserted, "On this World Health Day, let us reaffirm our commitment to achieving health for all, and not just some. Let us remember that health is not just the absence of illness, but a state of physical, mental, and social well-being. It is a precious resource that must be protected and nurtured, and not taken for granted."
Sharing her views on how we can achieve "health for all", Rachita stated, "As we confront the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, we must also address the underlying inequalities and systemic barriers that prevent many people from accessing essential health services. Health for all requires us to invest in public health infrastructure, promote preventive healthcare, and ensure equitable access to quality health services. It requires us to work together across sectors and borders, to leave no one behind. Let us make health for all a reality, not just a slogan."
Further relaxation of laws around medical cannabis
According to CMO & Co-Founder, Awshad, Richa Jaggi, the theme for this World Health Day 'Health For All' points towards equality, which means every patient in the country should have access to the best quality healthcare regardless of their status, race, religion and color.
She further stated that cancer treatment is evolving in the country, and especially in tier 2 and tier 3 cities and hence the scalability in the cancer treatment becomes essential. According to her, this can be achieved through further relaxation of laws around medical cannabis in the country.
Talking about the health benefits of medical cannabis, she said, "It has several overwhelming features which will facilitate cancer patients in their journey to fight against the deadly disease and its symptoms including pain. Together with the help of phenomenal features of the medical cannabis, we will be able to fight help the patients to survive their biggest fight Cancer".
People should stay focused on their health goals
Meanwhile, Sanjay Kalirona, CEO & Co-Founder, Gizmore, highlighted the health benefits of using smartwatches.
He stated, "An increasing number of people are now relying on smartwatches to track their daily movements and stay focused on their health goals. Smartwatches provide comprehensive insights that encourage people to stay active during the day. They also offer regular reminders such as staying hydrated, meditative breathing and movement reminders to motivate users. Also, users can monitor health data remotely."
Good health is not just about the absence of illness
On World Health Day, Pawan Kumar, CEO of Elista, wants people to remember that "Good health is not just about the absence of illness; it's about feeling and performing at your best. Small lifestyle changes can make a big difference in overall well-being."