Enhancing cervical cancer prevention in Nigeria Enhancing cervical cancer prevention in Nigeria. Image Credit: WHO Regional Office for Africa

Health Nigeria15. March 2024

Preventing Cervical Cancer, to Eliminate It Once and For All

Determined to eliminate cervical cancer by 2030, the government of Nigeria developed and implemented a successful prevention strategy by vaccinating millions of young girls against the human papillomavirus (HPV), the leading cause of cervical cancer.

β€œThe program provided by the government and its partners at primary health clinics has enlightened many people about cervical cancer and brought lifesaving services closer to the people,” explains Ilemobayo Wuraola, a nurse at the family planning clinic at Arakale Health Centre in Akure, in Ondo State.

The government of Nigeria teamed up with the World Health Organization (WHO), Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance, and partners to protect girls and women against the deadly disease through a vaccination strategy and a cervical cancer screening program. Between October 2023 and January 2024, 4.95 million girls aged nine to 14 were vaccinated against HPV in 16 states. The second immunization phase for the remaining 21 states is set to be in motion soon. Routine cervical cancer secondary prevention services are offered in primary healthcare facilities across five states – Anambra, Ondo, Kebbi, Niger, and Ekiti – benefiting 21,851 women through visual inspections with acetic acid, a simple, safe, and cost-effective alternative to pap smears seldom available for vulnerable women living in remote rural areas. A total of 667 women who tested positive for HPV successfully underwent a preventive treatment to avert cervical cancer during a 2023 campaign funded by The Susan Thompson Buffet Foundation and supported by the WHO African Region. 

World Health Organization

:::::: Related Articles

Back to top button