KHARTOUM (SUDANOW)—Sudanese physician Dr. Haniyah Mursy Fadul was awarded the Order of the British Empire in appreciation of her efforts for promotion of the woman heath care in Sudan by establishment in Khartoum of a center for diagnosis and treatment of breast cancer in 2010.
The Order of the British Empire is a decoration of an officer established by King George V during World War I. Obtaining it requires strict terms and fierce competition among candidates from science, arts and sports fields who have scored substantial accomplishments in their fields inside and outside the United Kingdom.
SUDANOW had a conversation with Dr. Haniyah for a briefing on operation of the center and on her unique experience in Sudan which qualified her for the Order of the British Empire.
Dr. Haniyah said she had specialized in X-ray and worked in the United Kingdom where she stayed for 20 years and underwent intensive courses in her specialization. Motivated by a desire to serve her people, she thought of establishing the Khartoum Center for the Breast Health Care. It is a non-profit privately funded hospital, the only one in Sudan that is specialized in breast cancer. It provides the beneficiaries with high quality services, including medical examinations and treatments undertaken by specialists of various specializations. It comprises, in one building, experts in various aspects of the breast cancer, including radio treatment, pathology, surgery and malignant oncology.
She said the services of the Center stress on X-ray examination for women of 40 years of age and above every two years, besides an evaluation clinic in which the patients or suspected patients undergo a diagnostic evaluation of three stages. This consists of a radio evaluation of the breast using X-ray or sound wave or both, a pathology evaluation of specimens taken from the breast and a clinical evaluation conducted by a breast surgeon.
Dr. Haniyah said the building was established in accordance with the relevant international standards, taking in consideration the ratio of the number of the nurses to the number of the beds, besides the cleanliness, control of pollution and infection and all other standards. The Center also includes a central section for sterilization concerned with all kinds of sterilization and the instruments are sterilized in the central section before distribution to all sections of the Center.
She said the Center is run by a well-trained Sudanese medical team consisting of professionals and physicians who undergo an annual training in which they are acquainted with the latest medical accomplishments and, accordingly, they provide high quality services.
Dr. Haniyah said she began by financing the project from her private sources. Then she went on providing the financial backing for the Center by establishing a philanthropic fund for assisting the patients who do not have the cost of the treatment.
Dr. Haniyah said she considers the awareness and early examination as highly important and, in the context of achieving these two elements, courses of awareness are held and Mother Festivals are organized during which the manner in which periodic tests are carried out is explained. This effort is aimed at raising awareness and encouraging the woman to take care of her body and her breasts throughout her life. It is important for the woman to appreciate how her breasts look and how she feels about them normally so that she will be able to detect any unusual change.
She indicated that the self-assessment and the regular examination are important for revealing the breast cancer in its early stages, but what is more important, she went on, is the possibility of diagnosing the cases of the patients who have not undergone any examination.
She said she was surprised when she was informed on telephone that she was awarded the Order and, on being notified, she expressed her happiness by saying:"I feel honor and pride for receiving the Order of the British Empire. This is the first and greatest public appreciation I have ever had."
Dr. Haniyah attributed the accomplishment to the diligence of the working team in the Center and to the instructions by the Board of Directors.
The British Ambassador to Khartoum, Dr. Peter Tiber, who held a ceremony in his residence in honor of Dr. Haniyah, described her winning of the Order as an embodiment of the unique ties between Britain and Sudan.
"This Order is very special and it was awarded in recognition of the effort and unparalleled commitment Dr. Haniyah has shown for provision of health services of a high standard for women in the Sudan," the Ambassador said.
Dr. Haniyah is now waiting for a date to be set on which she will travel to Britain where HM Queen Elizabeth II will award her the OBE in a ceremony in Buckingham Palace.
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