The president of the Association of Medical Doctors, Federal Medical Centre, Keffi, Dr Miri NS, has said that cervical cancer, though grossly underreported, can be prevented with a special vaccine through proper medical check up.
He said this on Tuesday, at the opening ceremony of the ongoing health week organised by the association at Keffi, Nasarawa State, themed, ‘Tackling The Scourge Of Cervical Cancer In Nigeria.’
According to Dr Miri, “Cervical Cancer, which is cancer of the mouth of the womb, the cervix, which every woman has, is very serious but can be prevented through proper medical screening and check up.
“The reason for this programme is to create awareness about the disease, offer free screening for the first 100 women where the preventive vaccine would be administered to those who don’t have the disease and in the case of those who are already diagnosed with the cancer, adequate treatment would be given to them so that they can live long and fulfilled lives.”
He said that the main cause of the disease is not known though it is associated with the human papilloma virus (HPV), but it has a higher risk of occurrence in women that have given birth to five children or more; women that use a lot of contraceptives over a long period of time or people with multiple sexual partners, either male or female.
Earlier, while speaking, the special guest of honour, Her Excellency, the wife of the governor of Nasarawa State, Hajiya Salamatu Tanko Almakura, said that the case of cervical cancer is a very serious one, in Nigeria, Africa and globally. According to Hajiya Salamatu, who was represented by the permanent secretary, Special Education, Nasarawa State, Dr Janet Ambazu, there is need for a lot of awareness to be done on the negative impact of the disease and how it can be prevented or treated as the case may be.
“The cervical cancer disease is a very serious one and in other to tackle it, there is need for proper awareness to be done.
“As a result of this, we have been able to ensure that primary health care (PHC) services are established in several communities, villages and at the local government level to create the awareness. Also, the community health workers at these PHCs have been properly educated on how to treat the patients properly and to encourage them to keep coming instead of going somewhere else where they won’t get proper treatment.”
One of the guest speakers at the event, Dr Rachael Barminas, who spoke on Patient Centred Care, disclosed that an enabling environment has to be created by government, doctors and health workers to encourage patients to come and keep coming for treatment. She said that it’s only when the patient is not fearful or agitated, that he or she can be properly treated.
Among the guests present at the event were, the Royal father of the day, Emir of Keffi, Alhaji Musa Chindo Yamusa III; the chairman of the Friends of Police Society, Mr Ibrahim Babayo and Dr Peter Achara.