19th June Is Observed As World Sickle Cell Day – A Day Of Raising Awareness
World Sickle Cell Awareness Day observed on June 19 every year is an awareness holiday that aims to increase public knowledge and provide an understanding of sickle cell disease (S.C.D.), and the challenges experienced by patients and their families and caregivers.
World Sickle Cell Day aims to raise awareness of sickle cell at a national and international level. On 22nd December 2008, the United Nations General Assembly adopted a resolution that recognises sickle cell disease as a public health problem and “one of the world’s foremost genetic diseases.” Sickle cell disease is a genetic condition that affects about millions of people worldwide and is most common in African, Mediterranean, and Arabian Peninsula areas.
Sickle cell disease (SCD) is an inherited blood disorder that causes “sickle” shaped red blood cells that can stick together, blocking blood flow and oxygen from reaching all parts of the body. People with SCD can experience serious pain (also known as pain crises), anaemia, infection, and other serious health problems that may require treatment by a healthcare provider. People with sickle cell are also at risk of complications stroke, acute chest syndrome, blindness, bone damage and priapism (a persistent, painful erection of the penis). Over time people with sickle cell can experience damage to organs such as the liver, kidney, lungs, heart and spleen. Death can also result from complications of the disorder.
Shine the Light is a national awareness campaign to celebrate World Sickle Cell Day. Let’s come together and spread awareness about this deadly disease and educate everyone about this disease, so as to save many lives worldwide.