Tuesday, 18 November 2014
Social determinants of cancer - Stopping cancer before it starts
In his new book “Stop Breast Cancer Before It Starts” (2013), Dr. Samuel Epstein does it again as he did before, most notably, perhaps, in his 1978 "Politics of Cancer". He blew a whistle on the ineffectiveness of so-called “war against cancer”. It is fair to ask - in Toronto as elsewhere in much of the world why we are still losing the fight with this epidemic in spite of billions being spent on diagnosis and treatment and why there is so little emphasis put on preventing it from happening in the first place.
Making prevention a priority would mean addressing social issues rather than just advocating lifestyle changes such as diet or exercise and blaming the victims for not getting tested soon enough. Who is ready to tackle underlining causes of poor health in general: food and environmental injustice, poverty, inadequate working conditions and corporate irresponsibility?