MCD's statement concerning the killing of Black people in America


February 4, 2020

World Cancer Day 2020

By Matthew S. Lynch

“On World Cancer Day, let us resolve to end the injustice of preventable suffering from this disease as part of our larger push to leave no one behind.” - Ban Ki-moon, Former Secretary-General, United Nations

Cervical cancer is not as dire as it used to be. In fact, thanks to routine vaccinations against the human papillomavirus (HPV) in girls and boys of reproductive age, cervical cancer could be almost fully preventable. Despite this, it continues to kill 9.6 million people annually.

Today, cervical cancer is the most important cause of death and disability among women of reproductive age in Equatorial Guinea. In fact, the country faces the third highest incidence rate of cervical cancer on the African continent. For this reason, MCDI designed Cervical Cancer Screening and Treatment (CCST) programs on the island to save lives by implementing early cervical cancer screening and treatment.

Throughout the island, we collaborated with local health services to construct Cervical Cancer “Screening Corners” from which 1) we trained local health professionals, and 2) trained local gynecologists could offer safe screenings to their patients. In total, about 15,000 women were screened on Bioko Island and the mainland Equatorial Guinea – many receiving gynecological services for the first time in their lives.

Additionally, we worked with local media outlets to conduct large-scale outreach campaigns to raise awareness of the importance of screenings to about 1,000 women who would not otherwise have traveled to the established CCST corners.

Our CCST programs serve as a pilot for the central African region and represent a significant step toward the prevention as well as treatment of cervical cancer. We would like to thank the government of Equatorial Guinea for its support and Noble Energy for its continued partnership. Over the coming years, we hope other countries replicate our CCST programs to save countless lives through prevention, early detection, and timely as well as quality treatment.

Matthew S. Lynch is the Assistant Communications Officer for MCDI in the US.

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