GIVING BACK: THE STORY OF SUFYAN
In 2008, Sufyan Shahzad was diagnosed with cancer. For Sufyan and his family, it seemed like the world had ended when the 12-year-old’s parents were told their son had cancer.
“Everyone; my mother and father, cried a lot when they got the news. The treatment was very expensive and there was no way we could afford it,” says Sufyan, now 23-years-old.
“At that time [in 2007] the cost of treatment was $5,500 to $7,000” he adds.
For the young child, everything turned around. He no longer could go out, eat out or do things normally as his friends would do. “I didn’t usually go out, but when I did, to go to the hospital, people would stare at me. Because of that I stopped going out and would spend all my time inside my room,” says Sufyan, adding that the hair loss due to chemotherapy added to his woes, leaving him without friends or someone to talk to.
Sufyan was treated at The Indus Hospital, Korangi Campus which provides free-of-cost quality cancer treatment to children from birth till the age of 16.
In 2011, Sufyan’s treatment ended. He is now cancer-free and a long-term survivor. On top of that, he is also now working at The Indus Hospital, Korangi Campus as an admissions officer. This is how his life has changed. From being a patient to fighting this battle with his willpower and determination, he is now working at Indus Hospital to help more people like him.
“Now it seems like the difficult part is over and everything is better. Coming back to Indus Hospital seems like I have gone back in time. When I walk through the Peds Oncology Unit I see my past when I look at the patients going through what I had gone through,” he says.
“When I see patients being afraid, thinking there is no cure for cancer, I feel it is my duty to tell them, that there is nothing to be afraid of. I am a living example that you can beat cancer and get back to your normal life,” he adds.