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Ministry of Health to roll out nationwide HPV vaccination

The Ministry of Health will roll out vaccination of the Human papillomavirus (HPV) in all 47 counties to curb increasing cases of cervical cancer in the country.

The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) National Cancer Institute Dr. Elias Melly said that the government will meet the cost of the vaccine and he called for an end to the myths associated with the vaccine while assuring the country that the vaccine was safe.

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He pointed out that statistics in the country indicate that every year 44,000 people are diagnosed with cancer out of which 28,000 were women, most of whom are diagnosed with cervical cancer.

Dr. Melly who was speaking to Community Health Promoters (CHP) in Bungoma said that according to World Health Organization (WHO) requirements, the vaccine is administered to girls at the age of 15 years, while all women in the age bracket between 35and 45 would be screened and those found infected will receive treatment.

He said that cervical cancer can be prevented if detected early through screening and eventually treatment and asked women to take the vaccination exercise seriously.

 Dr. Melly pointed out that every year 3,600 women in the country are diagnosed with cervical cancer out of which 67 percent die every year, a situation he said can be averted if the women are sensitized on the importance of screening and vaccination.

He said that the Ministry of Health will train Community Health Promoters (CHP) on Cancer to enable them impart the same education to the community at the grass root level.

HPV is a Sexually Transmitted Infection (STI).

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