8 February 2013

Uganda: Free Cancer Tests for 440,000 Women

Photo: Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
Health Worker reaching out to female at the community level (file photo).

As part of activities to mark World Cancer day, the ministry of Health (MoH) is launching a four-year nationwide initiative to provide affordable screening and treatment of cervical cancer for Ugandan women.

It is doing this in partnership with Marie Stopes Uganda, Reproductive Health Uganda and PACE under the theme: 'Cancer myths; get the facts.' The day falls on February 4 but Uganda will mark it on February 8.

According to a press statement from the partners, from today until 2016, some 410 health centres across Uganda will offer screening services for cervical cancer to 440,000 women and preventive treatment to 40,000 women (who are found to be with suspected cancer cells).

Cervical cancer, according to the MoH, is one of the two commonest causes of cancer-related deaths in Uganda. Officials say cancer is not a death sentence, with ignorance responsible for many cancer- related deaths.

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