Cervical Cancer Mozambique Slide ShowPresentation Transcript
In Mozambique, cervical cancer is the most frequent form of cancer in women.
Since 2007, the Ministry of Health (MOH) has worked to develop a national cervical and breast cancer prevention program, the first in the country, with the goal of offering screening and treatment as part of family and reproductive health services. In 2009, the MOH, with the help of Jhpiego and other partners, launched the program, targeted especially for women between 30 and 55 years of age.
Through USAID’s flagship maternal and child health program, MCHIP, Jhpiego began introducing health care providers to its pioneering single visit approach, which offers screening and treatment in one day. Of particular focus are women who are HIV-positive because they are at greater risk of developing cervical cancer.
Jhpiego/MCHIP experts held a seminar for 45 health providers from 10 facilities, explaining the visual inspection method that uses a vinegar wash to bathe the cervix and identify potentially suspect lesions and to treat these lesions at the same visit with cryotherapy (freezing the lesion). Another 14 providers learned supervisory skills. UNFP donated supplies and equipment.
Employing Jhpiego’s single visit approach was a key aspect of Mozambique’s strategy to reduce the incidence and deaths from cervical cancer as well as prepare and strengthen its health work force. The screening was offered as part of family and reproductive health services, an innovative approach to ensure the most women would benefit.
As part of this strategy, a group of 15 health care workers learned how to freeze and treat advanced precancerous lesions, perform another procedure—loop electrosurgical excision procedure—and take biopsies of advanced precancerous lesions.
Jhpiego/MCHIP also developed prevention and reference materials so health care workers could spread the word among Mozambican women about the need to be screened for this preventable and treatable cancer.
Nine primary and six referral sites opened in Maputo city and four provinces and women of all ages sought their services.
Health care workers explain the cervical cancer screening method, counsel women on treatment options, promote the early detection of breast cancer, and discuss family planning options and HIV/AIDS risk.
In less than a year of work, 4,791 women have been screened for cervical cancer using the visual inspection method. Of those, 341 were found to be positive for precancerous cells and 205 were treated the same day with cryotherapy; 34 were referred for further treatment. In addition, 5,099 breast exams were performed and 40 women with breast masses were referred for further consultation.
With support from USAID and the help of Jhpiego, Mozambique is bringing quality health care to women in the communities where they live and helping save lives from the leading cancer killer of women in the developing world.