Croatian Medical Students’ International Committee CroMSIC and Association of ill and threated from malignant diseases, their families and friends „For a New Day“ started a campaign called mRAK (meaning cool in Croatian, and RAK meaning CANCER). Campaign focuses on prevention and early detection of tumors in the field of public health and education. Our main focuses are lung cancer, breast cancer, cervical cancer, testicular cancer and melanoma.
Early detection is the best prevention, therefore the main aim of this project is to raise awareness of importance of prevention and early detection of malignancies and to educate about possibilities of new advanced medications that increase chances to successful treatment.
With this campaign we want to emphasize that with adequate prevention and new advanced methods of treatment tumors are becoming a chronic disease, not a death sentence. Also, we want to emphasize the importance of patient supports systems from the society and from the individuals.
Our main objectives are:
- To educate and sensitize medical students about tumors
- To educate medical students in small groups about prevention, risk factors, signs and symptoms, diagnostic methods and therapy
- To give an opportunity for medical students to widen their knowledge and acquire skills and confidence in future work with patients
- To sensitize medical students to cancer patients and to connect them with associations supporting cancer patients
- To raise awareness and knowledge about malignancies among high school students
- To educate high school students about prevention, risk factors, signs and symptoms
- To sensitize high school students to cancer patients
- To raise cancer awareness among general population
- To increase citizens’ response to national screening programs
- To inform public about prevention, risk factors, signs and symptoms
In order to do all that we are conducting workshops in high schools in duration of 45 minutes according to Y-PEER method. Peer education is an approach and strategy by which well trained and motivated young people organize in order to get to their peers and help them optimize relevant information into knowledge, form opinions and acquire skills so that they can act responsible and protect their health.
With school directors’ approval, previously educated medical students educate high schools students on prevention, importance of self-examination through short videos and on the models, importance of regular check-ups, diagnostic methods, risk factors, importance of healthy diet and healthy lifestyle. At the end of every workshop high school students get educational brochures and we make them aware of the problems surrounding cancer patients. We always tell the students to deliver all the information that they learned to their elderly relatives, especially the importance of regular check-ups.
There are couple of criteria by which we evaluate our project: number of medical students leading the workshops, number of delivered workshops, participation of experts in the fields, number of public hearings, interest of media, distribution of educational brochures and updated web page with relevant information.
Statistical analysis of education for medical students is stated by number of students participated in education, and impact on their knowledge is assessed with pre and post questionnaire. Statistical analysis of workshops in schools is measured by number of schools and high school students involved in the project in all cities, and their satisfaction with workshop is measured by Pie-Chart evaluation.