Cervical cancer

Support for cervical cancer program

Cervical cancer is the second most frequent cancer among women in PNG, with thousands thought to be dying from the disease annually. The development of a safe, highly effective vaccine for human papillomavirus (HPV), the virus that causes the cancer, means that with awareness and treatment, unnecessary deaths will be reduced with the long-term potential to eventually eliminate cervical cancer.

PNG’s struggle against cervical cancer

The country records at least 6 times more new cases each year and 14 times, the death rate.

And while data on cancer in PNG is limited, the Institute of Medical Research notes these alarming statistics.

For women in the country, cervical cancer is one of the top three cancers, affecting them.

The other two are breast cancer and mouth cancer.

Dr Andrew Vallely, is a researcher with PNG IMR for at least 10 years.

He said there were a number of different approaches undertaken over the years to address this cancer and reduce the rates.

Women dying due to lack of education: Local

Gou Ovia, organiser of the Pink Hahine appeal, which is a charity fundraiser, is helping raise funds for her aunt, 43-year-old mother of three, Henoa Kellei, who has been diagnosed with breast cancer.

The Pink Hahine cocktail fundraiser was held at the Helifix Hanger at Seven-Mile in Port Moresby last Friday night.

“The reason why women are dying is because they don’t have enough education about this subject, so hopefully if we raise over our targeted amount for our aunty, we can bring some awareness to our local villagers at Gabagaba,” Ovia said.

K986,000 raised to fight cervical cancer

This amount is to cover all three electorates - girls between the ages of 9 to 14, in Grades 3-8, in both public and private primary schools.​

The rollout of this project after years of trying to secure funds has been described as an achievement.

It is anticipated that Boroko Rotary will fund the vaccination of the girls in POM going from Grade 2 to Grade 3 next year, and also trial a rural Project in another province in 2018.

 These vaccinations are the only medicines that can actually prevent cervical cancer in women.​

15,000 girls vaccinated against cervical cancer

Cervical cancer is a painful, silent killer, taking the lives of 1,500 women each year in PNG.
It’s still the second biggest killer of women in the country, according to Rotarian, Dr Fa Pulotu, the HPV Vaccination Committee Chairperson.
Pari Primary School was the first to receive vaccinations, on May 1. 
The rotary aims to have 28,000 young girls vaccinated in 2017.​
The first round of vaccinations completed only last week.  
These girls underwent thorough checks afterwards for any pain or swelling which can happen in rare cases.

​Vaccine creator backs NCD pilot program

In a recent visit to Cancer Council Queensland, the Papua New Guinea Cancer Foundation CEO Dadi Toka Jr, and programs manager Priscillar Napoleon, had the honour of meeting the 2006 Australian of the Year, Professor Ian Frazer AC.

Professor Ian, an Australian immunologist and creator of the cancer vaccine, was very pleased to hear that the NCD pilot project was finally being implemented in PNG’s capital.

He expressed his support and assistance if required by Papua New Guinea.

Husband slept in same room as wife's body for six days

Wendy Davison, 50, died at home in Derby last month after a 10-year battle with cervical cancer.

Russell Davison, who has been left "heartbroken", said he did not want her body to go to a mortuary and he wanted to challenge attitudes towards dying.

It is legal to keep a body at home and Derbyshire Coroner's Court confirmed Mrs Davison's GP reported her death.

Mr Davison said: "Death seems to be such a taboo subject in our society, no-one seems to want to talk about it.

28,000 girls to be vaccinated

The launch of the Human Papillomavirus Vaccine took place at the State Function Room on Thursday, March 23.

The Rotary Club, in partnership with NDOH, U.S Embassy and other stakeholders, has bought 56 thousand vaccines for 28,000 girls in NCD private and public schools.

The first official HPV Vaccination in the prevention of cervical cancer will start here in the National Capital District (NCD).

Chairman of the Boroko Rotary Club, Dr. Faa Lautofa Pulotu, said working with this program over the last three years has been a daunting task for all concerned.

Girls urged to get vaccinated against cervical cancer

Girls aged 9-14 years and attending grade 3-6 at a private or public primary school in NCD will be offered the vaccination free of charge.

The cervical cancer vaccination is fully endorsed by the PNG National Department of Health and the World Health Organisation.

It is part of the PNG National Health Plan and will be offered to all girls in PNG.

A consent form will be given to the girls at school to take home to be signed by a parent or guardian and returned to school before the scheduled vaccination day.

NCD cervical cancer vaccination program to be launched this month

The pilot program will be officially launched by Prime Minister Peter O’Neill and will be rolled out in schools in NCD.

The program is introduced to PNG by NDoH in partnership with Rotary Club of Boroko, Department of Education, WHO, UNICEF, Cancer Foundation PNG, and other partners.

A total of 56 000 doses of vaccine, funded by the Rotary Club, have arrived in the country, enough to vaccinate 26 000 girls.

All girls aged 9-14 years attending grade 3-6 at all public and private schools in NCD will be offered two doses of the vaccine free of charge.