Cervical cancer, caused by the human papillomavirus (HPV) and particularly devastating in those living with HIV co-infection, is a growing public health concern. Currently, every 2 minutes a life is lost to this disease. The fact that nearly 9 of 10 these deaths are women in low- and middle-income countries, describes the glaring global divide in access to life-saving information and services.
We already have proven and cost-effective solutions to prevent cervical cancer, to treat it and to care for those with late stage disease. We are urging Heads of State to demonstrate political leadership, make commitments and act to implement programmes with equitable access and coverage to services, to put the country on the pathway to elimination:
Your decisive action and sustained commitment to national programmes will save lives, improve wellbeing and provide economic benefits for families and communities.
Work on the Global Strategy Towards Elimination of Cervical Cancer is moving forward rapidly following the overwhelming support of our governments at the Executive Board in January.
The theme for World Immunization Week this year is Protected Together: Vaccines Work! Underscoring both the safety and the importance of the herd effect, the campaign will also celebrate Vaccine Heroes from around the world – from parents and community members to health workers and innovators – who all help ensure we are all protected through the power of vaccines.
Add the hashtag #HPVVaccinesWork to ensure the HPV vaccination has a good share of voice and build the understanding of its role in the elimination of cervical cancer.