It takes a lot to make even educated women seek a health check, leave alone a breast examination. 

On Wednesday, MIOT Hospital tried to rectify that, to an extent. There was very little talk about cancer or insistence on clinical examination but the message was hard to miss.

The women were encouraged to participate in a painting session, wear a pink ribbon on their sleeve, take photographs and leave a message, along with their photo, on a pink board. They spent time with model and actor Milind Soman or indulged themselves in a perfume shop or simply ate healthy food. 

Prithvi Mohandas, joint managing director, MIOT, who launched ‘Breast Friends Day’ in the run-up to ‘Pinkathon’ to be held in the city next month, said the effort was to make women understand the need to stay healthy.

A health check, including a breast examination, is the way to do it, he said. On Wednesday, the hospital also offered registration facilities for those who wanted a health check-up.

Milind Soman, also a brand ambassador for Pinkathon, appealed to the women by bringing in reference to mothers, mothers-in-law and sisters. “We must invest in women today,” he said, indicating their health was important for the well-being of the male members in the family too.

Sharmila Mohandas of MIOT set the mood for the event by painting a woman in pink on a canvas. Several other invitees also participated in the exercise. There was a demonstration of martial arts form Aikido by Minori Ogawa from Japan.