Self Determination and Positive Outlook – My virtue to succeed in Life
Endorsed by Dr. Gro Harlem Brundtland, granted by Tang Prize Foundation and organized by NCKU, the Gro Brundtland Week of Women in Sustainable Development commits to engage the outstanding female researchers for public health and sustainable development. It empowers an international platform for collaboration and partnership of female researchers in Taiwan and developing countries.
Dr. Dahiya is a senior resident doctor in community medicine at Maulana Azad Medical College, New Delhi of India, has studied the quality of life of women who were treated for advanced cervical cancer. Upon receiving of this award, Dr. Dahiya find it very inspiring to work for the cause of public health in India, and with full enthusiasm and confidence to help her country to achieve goals, particularly goal #3 of the SDGs.
Dr. Dahiya’s research was related to quality of life of women who were treated for advanced cervical cancer (the leading cancer amongst women in India). Most of the parameters that define quality of life, using validated tools, improved after treatment. This shows that cancer patients should not just strive for survival but also expect a better quality of life following treatment. Both survival and quality of life would be far greater if cancer is detected early through periodic screening.
While communicable diseases like TB, HIV/AIDS, Vector borne diseases continue, there is growing burden of non-communicable diseases like diabetes, hypertension, heart diseases and cancers. Medical education needs to be revamped in the light of changing epidemiological and demographic profile and technological advancement. Quality of medical education is also variable and needs improvement.
Dr. Dahiya’s career goal is to expand access to efficient and low-cost screening approaches and vaccines with public health interventions. Vaccines of common childhood diseases are given free through public healthcare system. However, the coverage is sub-optimal. As for adult vaccination, it is almost non-existing in the country. Therefore, More awareness and better quality of services would be required to improve access to vaccines and coverage of eligible population.
In the future, Dr. Dahiya would like to continue further research in prevention, management of common cancers and improving their quality of life in India through multi-pronged approach. For long term yields, it is necessary to evolve intervention amongst girls during adolescence. They need to be made aware about social, environmental and biological determinants of cancer among women. She concludes that she would conduct further collaborative research with educational institutions and periodic screening program with community-based organizations, to expand access to efficient and low-cost screening approaches and vaccines.
Dr. Dahiya would like to convey to girls in India, as well as other developing countries, that pursuing education in science, particularly health sciences, is not only need of the hour but also very enterprising career pathway so close to life. Firm determination and positive attitude are two important virtues by which people could get success in the field of medicine.
Many doctors would prefer to work in clinical/hospital-based careers which is also needed, but Dr. Dahiya finds it more challenging to work as a public health specialist as it requires broad multi-sectoral understanding, working close to communities and need patience to see long-term outcomes. But it is really inspiring to see results that can affect lives of millions.
Dr. Neha Dahiya
2016 MD Community Medicine, Lady Hardinge Medical College, New Delhi, India
1. Dahiya N, Basu S, Singh MM, Garg S, Kumar R, Kohli C. Knowledge and Practices Related to Screening for Breast Cancer among women in Delhi, India. Asia Pac J Cancer Prev 2018;19(0):155-159
2. Dahiya N, Garg S. “ Three parent baby- is it ethical? Indian Journal of Medical Ethics. 2017 (published online 14 November)
3. Dahiya N, Bachani D, Acharya AS, Sharma DN, Gupta S, Haresh KP, Rath GK. Quality of Life of
Patients with Advanced Cervical Cancer before and after Chemo-radiotherapy. Asian Pac J Cancer Prev2016;17(7):3095-9
4. Dahiya N, Bachani D, Acharya AS, Sharma DN, Gupta S, Haresh KP. Socio-demographic, reproductive and clinical profile of women diagnosed with advanced cervical cancer in a tertiary care institute of Delhi. J Obstet Gynaecol India. 2017; 67(1):53-60
5. Dahiya N, Bachani D, Das R, Rasania SK. Socio demographic and clinical profile of HIV Positive
patients attending integrated counseling & Testing centre of a primary health centre in Delhi. SAARC J TUBER LUNG DIS HIV/ AIDS,2016;12(2)
6. Dahiya N, Acharya AS, Bachani D, Goel MK. Strategies for reducing risk of cervical cancer in adolescents in developing countries- A view point. Indian Journal of Medical Specialties 2016; 7: 35-38.
7. Kakkar AK, Dahiya N. Factors Affecting Choice of Future Specialty among Medical Students. N Am J Med Sci. 2014 Apr;6(4):181-2.
8. Bachani D, Dahiya N. Preventing Mother to Child Transmission of HIV: Need for Universal Coverage through Integrated Health Care. Journal of Family Medicine and Primary Care. (Accepted for publication).
9. Kakkar AK, Dahiya N. Drug treatment of obesity: current status and future prospects. Eur J Intern Med. 2015 Mar;26(2):89-94
10. Dahiya N, Kakkar AK. Mobile health: Applications in tackling the Ebola challenge. J Family Med Prim Care 2016;5: 192-3.
11. Garg S, Basu S, Dahiya N. A review of current strategy for rabies prevention and control in the developing world. Indian J Community Health. 2017 ; 29,1:10-
12. Garg S, Basu S, Dahiya N. International Health Regulations: Is India prepared after 10 Years of implementation? IJMR. 2017;3,1 23-27
13. Dahiya N, Basu S, Singh M, Garg S, Kumar R, Kohli C. The knowledge and practices relating to
screening for breast cancer among women in Delhi, India. Asia Pacific Journal of Cancer Prevention (Accepted For Publication.)
14. Kakkar AK, Dahiya N. Bedaquiline for the treatment of resistant tuberculosis: promises and pitfalls. Tuberculosis (Edinb). 2014 Jul;94(4):357-62.
15. Kumar Kakkar A, Dahiya N. The evolving drug development landscape: from blockbusters to niche busters in the orphan drug space. Drug Dev Res. 2014 Jun;75(4):231-4.
16. Kakkar AK, Dahiya N. Current issues with the use of bedaquiline. Ann Pharmacother. 2014