Worried by the increasing rate of Cervical Cancer in Nigeria, Kano state government has established three cancer screening centers in the state.
The state governor, Rabi’u Musa Kwankwaso announced this during the symbolic launch of the centers, donation of drugs and medical consumables to people suffering from Sickle Cell disease in Kano and graduation of 2,200 Traditional Birth Attendants, trained by the government.
“Cervical cancer is the uncontrolled growth and spread of abnormal cells in a woman’s cervix (the narrow opening of the womb into the vagina). Cervical cancer is the most common female cancer in developing countries, with approximately 500,000 new cases and 250,000 deaths occurring each year. Around the world, a woman dies of cervical cancer every two minutes.”
In Nigeria, it is the second most common cancer affecting women and the most common female genital cancer constituting a major cause of mortality among the country’s females in their most productive years.
The Society for Family Health, Nigeria, a credible non-governmental organization recently disclosed that about 9,659 women in the country die of cervical cancer annually. About 24.8 percent of women in the general population harbour the HPV, the virus known to cause cervical cancer in women and genital warts in both men and women.
Governor Kwankwaso stated that the establishment of the Cervical Cancer screening centers in each of the three senatorial zones of the state is to ensure early detection and treatment of the disease, as part of broad efforts to safeguard the health of women, especially those in the rural areas.
The state government spend N8 million in establishing the centers at Murtala Muhammad Specialist Hospital, Gwarzo General Hospital and Wudil General Hospital. In this regard, it is expected that some development partners will assist the government through the provision of more facilities and capacity building.
Turning to the Traditional Birth Attendants, TBA, the governor explained that N30 million was spent on training them because of the role they play in child delivery, explaining that each of the 2,200 TBA will be given free delivery kit by the government.
Noting that TBAs presently deliver the majority of women in Nigeria, the governor recalled that last year alone, they delivered an estimated 100,000 babies in Kano, outside modern health care facilities.
On the donation of drugs to Sickle cell patients, the governor maintained that it is to alleviate their plight, stressing that the state government will remain committed to improving existing health facilities, to make life more meaningful for the citizenry.
Governor Kwankwaso then thanked donor agencies like UNICEF and WHO as well as non-governmental organizations for supporting the government to achieve its health-related polices and programmes, hoping the partnership would be sustained.