Mazumdar Shaw Medical Foundation in collaboration with Narayana Health will embark on a rural cancer surveillance program from November 19, 2013. The programme will be launched by Kiran Mazumdar Shaw, Chairman and Managing Director, Biocon and Dr. Devi Shetty, Chairman, Narayana Health. The project will be led by the department of Head and Neck Oncology of Mazumdar Shaw Cancer Center and will attempt to educate the community about the early signs and symptoms of mouth and throat cancer, which are the most common forms of cancer in rural India. Breast and cervical cancers will also be addressed in this drive. It will be initiated at three villages of Atebele, Anekal, Gigini in the first phase and then will be rolled out to other parts of Karnataka. To support this program, a vehicle for the medical professionals to visit the villages was donated by Dr. N Ravindranthan. The initiative will be coordinated by Dr. Moni Kuriakose, Director, Head and Neck Oncology and Dr. Nirupa Bareja, Director, Mazumdar Shaw Medical Foundation – Corporate Outreach Programme. Over 75% of the diagnosed cancer cases are in stage IV. The detection of cancer at an advanced stage can significantly lower the chances of curing the disease, increase the side effects of treatment as well the cost associated with the treatment. Further the delay in the diagnosis of cancer is primarily because of the lack of awareness of the symptoms associated with common cancers and poor access to medical care in rural settings, according to the Center. The rural cancer surveillance programme to be initiated by Mazumdar Shaw Medical Foundation will strive to remove these barriers by reaching out to the rural community, educating the people about the early warning signs of cancers, screening for common cancers, and undertaking preventive measures, according to the press release.