Olanrewaju Lawal, Birnin Kebbi
Nigeria’s First Ladies Against Cancer (FLAC) has stressed the need to vaccinate of 90 percentage of young girls with HPV vaccine before they attain the age of 15 and also ensure that women are screened twice using a high- performance test to eliminate cancer by the year 2030.
They said they were motivated to intensify campaign against cancer through their individual Non -Governmental organizations across the six geopolitical parts of the country due to the limited treatment options available to cancer patients.
Kebbi State Governor’s wife, Dr. Zainab Shinkafi Bagudu, and Dr Nono Simelela, Assistant Director -General for Strategic Programmatic Priorities: Cervical Cancer Elimination of World Health Organization (WHO) , stated this in a joint statement made available to Sunday Sun in Birnin Kebbi, Kebbi State capital on Saturday.
According to them, in 2008, there was an estimated 14,943 new cases as well as an estimated 10,403 deaths from cervical cancer in Nigeria. The statement reads in part: “Research shows that poor awareness with an underlying weak healthcare system that lacks a screening policy and accurate diagnostic tools are the major contributors that account for the high morbidity and mortality associated with the disease.
“In order to achieve this, Nigeria needs to incorporate HPV vaccination into the National immunization program, one of the key advocacies that FLAC has been pushing for. Nigeria has finally committed to the introduction of HPV vaccine into the immunization programme by the first quarter of 2021 but millions of doses are needed and there is doubt that availability will meet global demand.