Since its launch in 2015, Baheya Foundation has been one of the chief institutions in Egypt dedicated to the cause of fighting breast cancer. The aim of the Foundation, in tandem with its namesake hospital, is to diagnose and treat women afflicted with the disease, which is the most common cancer among women. From mammograms to chemotherapy, Baheya foots the bill for a woman’s entire journey fighting breast cancer, providing a real lifeline for families in need.
Given that early detection dramatically improves the survival rate of women afflicted with breast cancer, Baheya places sizeable focus on this stage of the process, side by side with educational campaigns and the breast cancer treatment itself. Through its essential work, Baheya is able to give many women a second lease on life. With the generous support of corporations and individuals, such as Ms. Zeinab Bashier, and public institutions like the National Organization of Women headed by Dr. Maya Morsy, Baheya has been able to serve 88,000 individuals during its short time span.
Large-scale events are held regularly by the Baheya Foundation to increase national awareness of the disease and of the importance of early detection in saving lives. In the same spirit, Dr. Maya Morsy and Ms. Zeinab Bashier, one of the country’s leading philanthropists, recently organised an informative tour of the Baheya hospital grounds, an impressive 10,000 sq.m. of top-of-the-line facilities, for a group of celebrities and members of the media. The visiting group included prominent figures such as Injy El Mokkaddem, Naglaa Badr, Jasmine Taha Zaki, Hanan Al Bahie and Mariam Amin as well as eniGma’s Editor-in-Chief, Yasmine Shihata. The high profile group also took part in an eye-opening seminar led by doctors at Baheya, with a number of breast cancer survivors explaining the challenges faced by women as they undergo breast cancer treatment. The visit received generous media coverage, thus helping to spread Baheya’s life-saving message. At the end of the visit, the visitors got the opportunity to receive checkups themselves.
The Baheya Foundation employs a variety of other strategies to raise public awareness. One important strategy consists of organising on-ground campaigns where groups of advocates and doctors from Baheya hospital travel across the country to all governorates, particularly to impoverished neighborhoods where a fundamental lack of knowledge about the disease is, unfortunately, all too common. Doctors in these campaigns tackle common misconceptions about the disease and help the public identify its symptoms.
Baheya’s system ensures that it is easy for women to conduct the checkups necessary for early detection of the disease. Women who suspect they may have symptoms can call Baheya’s hotline, 16602, to easily arrange for a checkup at the hospital. Women who call this hotline are asked about the symptoms they may be worried about, and doctors on the call decide right away if there is a need for concern. If there is any possibility that the caller could have breast cancer, she is booked for an immediate mammogram or sonar scan. If the scans come back positive, she is immediately put in contact with a surgeon at the hospital, who discusses treatment options with her, and she begins the treatment of choice right away.
Within the few years of its existence, it is remarkable how Baheya has truly become the safe haven for women with breast cancer to turn to, knowing that they will be well taken care of. It has become a cornerstone of so many women’s lives receiving treatment and also for women seeking to get regular checkups as a precaution. Every donation to Baheya, regardless of its size, helps the foundation in its fight against breast cancer. We are all invited to join Baheya in its noble effort of helping breast cancer patients on their challenging journey to recovery.