On the occasion of Serbian National Day Against Breast Cancer, HRH Crown Princess Katherine sends an appeal to all women to be responsible for their health, by having regular preventive examinations for the preservation of their health, and catching breast cancer on time, before it becomes life-threatening.

HRH Crown Princess Katherine is also appealing to all men – husbands, fathers, and sons, that they need to support the women in their lives, whether they are their wives, daughters or mothers, or other female relatives they have, and encourage them to have regular exams.

We must also not forget all the women who lost their lives due to breast cancer, due to late detection, and keep the memory of them. Prevention and early detection of the disease are the answer to how one can feel secure from it affecting our lives. Starting treatment on time significantly increases the chance of a permanent cure, especially considering significant advances in medication and other treatments for this disease over the past few decades.

According to the latest data from the Institute for the Public Health of Serbia “Milan Jovanovic Batut”, breast cancer is the leading malignant tumor in the morbidity and mortality of women in Serbia, and around the world. Also, breast cancer is one of the leading causes of premature death within the female population. Measured by years of lost life, breast cancer is the third leading cause of death in women aged 45 to 64. Oncologists constantly emphasize the importance of regular lifesaving breast cancer screenings, and between the two screenings, women should have regular breast examinations at their doctor and regular self-examination.

“This terrible breast cancer situation brings fear, which many people are hiding from and are scared to even mention its name aloud. But hiding will not change the reality. We need to follow the regular examinations to face that fear and, to speak out about the importance of fighting against breast cancer. It is tragic to see how many lives each year are lost because of this development in a woman’s life, due to the neglect of regular examinations. Many of these lives could have been saved if the preventive examinations were done in time.

That is why I send my appeal to all women of Serbia and the Republic of Srpska to be responsible for their health, with regular examinations, for the sake of staying healthy, and for the sake of their loved ones.

Preventive doctor examinations, breast cancer screening, and self-examination only take a few minutes. These few minutes can save a life. I appeal to women – wives, sisters, daughters, mothers, grandmothers – to take the responsibility seriously for their health. It is the only way to detect the disease on time and cure it, and to win the most important battle of all – the battle for the preservation of life”, said HRH Crown Princess Katherine.

HRH Crown Princess Katherine’s Foundation emphasize the importance of preventing, treating, and fighting breast cancer, has been actively involved in raising awareness as well as providing medical equipment to identify and treat the disease on time, together with offices of Lifeline Humanitarian Organization abroad, that all work under Crown Princess’s patronage.

Thanks to the Stavros Niarchos Foundation and their generosity in the donation of a digital mobile mammography unit for preventive breast examination, 12 years ago, through the HRH Crown Princess Katherine Foundation to the Clinical Center Nis, more than 155,000 women have been examined on this unit so far through Serbia.

Five oncology symposiums, dedicated to screening and treatment of breast cancer and other most frequent cancers, were organized by the Crown Princess Foundation in Belgrade, in joint effort with the Institute for Oncology and Radiology of Serbia, and thanks to the collaboration with Professor Hedvig Hricak and her team from the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, New York. Thanks to Doctor Hricak, additional training and education were organized in New York for Serbian doctors.

Under the auspices of HRH Crown Princess Katherine, the “Race for Cure” was organized in Belgrade in 2019, to raise the awareness of women and the entire society in the fight against breast cancer.