Jammu: The Jammu and Kashmir government today said that the incidents of cancer were on the rise in the state, especially in the Valley, with 3,521 fresh cases being registered last year.
However, the highest number of 4,976 such cases were reported in 2016.
In a written reply to a question by National Conference legislator Mubarak Gul in the Legislative Assembly, Health minister Bali Bhagat admitted that there was an increase in the cancer cases in the state, especially in the Valley.
He said 3,075 cancer cases were reported in 2011, 3,288 in 2012, 3,157 in 2013, 3,940 in 2014, 4,257 in 2015.
“Every effort is being made by the government to help the needy cancer patients living below poverty line and such patients are being given free investigation, anti-cancer drugs at subsidised rates at least,” he said.
The minister said radiotherapy treatment was being delivered free of cost as per government policy.
Poor patients, falling under the income group of less than Rs 20,000 per month, are given financial assistance under the cancer treatment management fund, he said.
Bhagat said the installation of linear accelerator with an estimated cost of Rs 15.50 crore, including civil works, was under progress in the radiation oncology department of the SMHS hospital Srinagar which shall be made functional by June this year.
He said the PET-CT facility has been made operational from January 7 and so far 20 procedures have been done with effect from January 15.
In response to another question, the minister said the proposal regarding the establishment of a medical university in the state was under active consideration of the government.