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National summit held on cervical cancer

IANS Mar 11, 2024

National Summit on Cervical Cancer was held in Bengaluru on 9 March which concluded with a call to action for a ‘Cervical Cancer Mukt Bharat’ (Free India of Cervical Cancer).

“Karnataka government is working with concerted efforts to deliver healthcare services that are affordable, accessible and of high quality to all citizens with a particular focus on women's health,” Minister of Health and Family Welfare said.

The minister said that the government is committed to working alongside healthcare professionals, NGOs, and civil society to ensure accessible screening, timely diagnosis, and effective treatment for all women in Karnataka.

The summit which was a collaborative effort by ECHO India, Karnataka Obstetrics and Gynaecology Society, ARTIST for HER, and the Healthcare Sector Skill Council (HSSC) brought together policymakers, leading healthcare experts and key opinion leaders to discuss critical issues to chart a path forward in the fight against this preventable disease.

Chairperson and CEO of ARTIST for HER, emphasised the crucial role of awareness and education, saying that early detection and intervention are key to winning the battle against cervical cancer.

“By empowering women with knowledge and ensuring accessible screening services, we can significantly impact the future of women's health in India,” the Chairperson said.

She said that in 2020, WHO established a 90-70-90 Cervical Cancer Elimination Strategy for 2030 which involves vaccinating 90 per cent of girls by age 15 with the HPV vaccine, screening 70 per cent of women between ages 35 and 45 using a high-performance test, and treating 90 per cent of identified cervical disease cases.

She said that HPV, linked to pre-cancerous lesions, can be prevented with a vaccine.

The summit concluded with a renewed commitment from all stakeholders to work collaboratively towards achieving the shared vision of a ‘Cervical Cancer Mukt Bharat’.

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