Men meet to discuss cancer, chronic ills

2018-05-24 06:01
Vuyani Macotha telling the audience how he find out that he has bladder cardiovascular cancer. PHOTOS: UNATHI OBOSE

Vuyani Macotha telling the audience how he find out that he has bladder cardiovascular cancer. PHOTOS: UNATHI OBOSE

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On Saturday, Men from Khayelitsha and surrounds converged in the Blue Hall in Site C for a so-called Men’s Indaba, to discuss issues about them.

The event was organised by Doctors Without Borders, together with the Great Commission Ministers Network of Khayelitsha.

The aim was to share knowledge and experience about the challenges they are facing in life.

They identified prostate cancer, high blood pressure and diabetes as the most common illnesses in males as they get older.

Doctors Without Borders is a non-governmental organisation that deals with health issues especially tuberculosis and Aids.

The manager for Men’s Health Service in Khayelitsha, Bubele Makeleni said they wanted to have an open dialogue with men and listen to their opinions and concerns to see what they can do, going forward.

“We encourage men to visit clinics regularly when they feel anything abnormal in their bodies. We also encourage them to eat healthy food and stop excessive alcohol drinking, smoking and eating junk food. They must exercise to keep their bodies fit,” said Makeleni.

“According to our survey most men don’t go to the clinics regularly. Even those who take treatment, default on it. So we opened men’s clinics so that they can be able to talk to other well trained men about their problems,” he said.

Makeleni said they have about four men’s clinics in Khayelitsha.

“We have Sisonke clinic in Site C, Site B Male Clinic, Kuyasa Male Clinic, which all open from Monday to Friday at 8:00 a.m to 4:00 pm ... There is after hours male clinic at Site B Day Hospital on Wednesdays and opens at 4pm till 8pm,”he said.

Speaking on behalf of the Great Commission Ministers Network, Pastor Innocent Kula said they have forged ties with men’s clinic to make it easy for congregants to visit health centres.

“There was a gap between churches and health centres ... People believed that things need a spiritual approach only and now we have come to the realisation that people live on flesh and they need doctor’ assistance,” he said.

“We used to spiritualise, even as a person is sick, we pray for him and ask him or her to stop taking treatment. But now we realised it doesn’t work like that. We pray for you and encourage you to go to hospital,” he said.

He encouraged men to stand up and look after their bodies.

“Even if you are a Christian but there are men who have prostate cancer, high blood and other diseases. So we need to balance health and Christianity and stop calling people who are going to hospitals for checkups as sell outs,” said Kula.

One of the residents from Hermanus, Vuyani Macotha said he was diagnosed with bladder cardiovascular cancer in October 2017 after he had noticed some changes in his body.

“Initially, I noticed that when I have to urinate, I cant hold it for long, even as I’m driving, I have to stop and relieve myself ... I also developed a bladder problem. After a visit to a doctor, he referred me to a specialist ... That was how I found out I have cancer.”


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