Jamaica to introduce HPV vaccine

first_imgThe Jamaica government says it intends to introduce a human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine this year in the fight against cervical cancer.“A study in the United States revealed that within four years of the vaccine’s introduction, HPV decreased by over 50 per cent among females aged 14 to 19. This is very good news for the fight against cervical cancer,” said Health Minister, Dr. Christopher Tufton.n his message at the launch of the Jamaica Cancer Society’s fundraising initiative, “Relay for Life,” last week, Tufton said the vaccine is just one of several interventions by the Ministry of Health to reduce cases of cancer among the population.He said that an improved public health system should decrease delay in the screening, diagnosis and treatment of persons living with cancer.Cancer accounts for 23 per cent of deaths here.The most common cancers in Jamaica are prostate, lung and colorectal in men; and breast, cervical and colorectal cancers in women. Prostate and breast cancers are the leading cause of cancer-related deaths.In 2013, the Ministry of Health commenced the implementation of the Cabinet-approved National Strategic and Action Plan for the Prevention and Control of Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) in Jamaica. The plan, which emphasises cancer prevention, is slated to last from 2013 to 2018.Most recently, the Ministry launched the Jamaica Moves campaign, which encourages all Jamaicans to incorporate at least 30 minutes of physical activity in their daily routines.Under the theme ‘Let’s Keep Hope Alive’, the 15th staging of the fundraising initiative, Relay for Life, is slated to take place on June 17 and 18.The initiative aims to raise J$15 million to assist newly diagnosed cancer patients in accessing treatment; and to promote greater awareness of the condition through public education programs.last_img

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