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‘WHO commits to eliminate cervical cancer globally’

  • Category
    Economy
  • Published
    24th Nov, 2020

In a first, the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) launched the Global Strategy to Accelerate the Elimination of Cervical Cancer.

Context

In a first, the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) launched the Global Strategy to Accelerate the Elimination of Cervical Cancer.

About

  • Cervical cancer develops in a woman's cervix (the entrance to the uterus from the vagina).  
  • Almost all cervical cancer cases (99%) are linked to infection with high-risk human papillomaviruses (HPV), an extremely common virus transmitted through sexual contact.
  • Although most infections with HPV resolve spontaneously and cause no symptoms, persistent infection can cause cervical cancer in women.
  • Effective primary (HPV vaccination) and secondary prevention approaches (screening for, and treating precancerous lesions) will prevent most cervical cancer cases.
  • When diagnosed, cervical cancer is one of the most successfully treatable forms of cancer, as long as it is detected early and managed effectively.
  • Cancers diagnosed in late stages can also be controlled with appropriate treatment and palliative care.
  • With a comprehensive approach to prevent, screen and treat, cervical cancer can be eliminated as a public health problem within a generation.

Cervical Cancer Types

There’s more than one kind of cervical cancer.

  • Squamous cell carcinoma: This forms in the lining of your cervix. It’s found in up to 90% of cases.
  • Adenocarcinoma:This forms in the cells that produce mucus.
  • Mixed carcinoma:This has features of the two other types.

The numbers

  • Cervical cancer is the fourth most common cancer in women.
  • The annual number of new cases of cervical cancer are expected to increase to 700,000 from 570,000 between 2018 and 2030.
  •  The annual number of deaths is projected to rise to 400,000 from 311,000.    

Key-highlights of the Programme

  • The programme aims to complete the following targets by 2030 globally:
    • 90 per cent girls fully vaccinated with the Human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine by 15 years of age
    • 70 per cent women screened using a high-performance test by 35 years and again by 45 years
    • 90 per cent of women identified with cervical disease receive treatment (90 per cent of women with pre-cancer treated and 90 per cent of women with invasive cancer managed).
  • Another highlight of the strategy is to stress on investing in interventions to meet these targets that can generate substantial economic and societal returns.
  • WHO estimates that $ 3.20 will be returned to the economy for every dollar invested through 2050 and beyond if women’s workforce participation increased.
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