The Zambian government in partnership with the US has initiated a health-based project for its young women. This is a result of their high risk of contracting cervical cancer. Therefore, the HPV vaccine is here to keep the women safe from cervical cancer, which has been a monster to women for a long time. As a result, more than 17,000 Zambia girls given HPV Vaccine can rest assured that they are safe.
What exactly is HPV Vaccine
The HPV (Human Papilloma Virus) vaccine is the vaccine girls in Zambia are receiving in efforts to fight cervical cancer. This is a vaccine that prevent them from contracting cervical cancer, especially in their productive years. Although there are other measures needed to stay safe, this is basic protection from the disease. The government of Zambia has rolled out the program to ensure all the girls aged 14 years have received the vaccine.
So far, the vaccine has been issued in Chongwe, Kafue, and Lusaka districts in the pilot phase. It is now spreading to the rest parts of Zambia. This will go on until all the girls have been reached out so that they stay safe. The biggest number of girls are those who have been immunized while in school. Also, those not able to access school are being vaccinated in the health centers and other community strategies that the government have put in place. This will help them join the more than 17,000 Zambian girls given the HPV Vaccine.
Statistics of HPV Vaccine Recipients
The Ministry of Health has confirmed that 17,600 have so far received the immunization and they are targeting 50,000 girls. The Ministry is pleased by the turn out in large numbers. This is an indication that the plan will roll out well as the numbers keep increasing. Zimbabwe’s Minister of Health’s Assistant Director for Cancer Prevention, Sharon Kapambwe, has urged the girls yet to receive the vaccine to visit health facilities. They should do this ahead of the closure of the program on 20th July 2019.
“As opposed to numbers recorded during the Child Health Week, girls are being encouraged to visit health facilities and access the vaccination before July 20th, 2019,” she said. The girls are free to get the vaccine from community-based strategies, schools, and from the health facilities near them.
This project, which is a two-year phase, targets a total number of 331,000 girls. It’s expected to run in two phases, that is this year and next year. The HPV vaccination serves as a solution to the 3,000 cases of cervical cancer reported every year in Zambia. This posts the highest number in the continent, no wonder more than 17,000 Zambia girls given the HPV vaccine are relieved.
Myths on Issuance of HPV Vaccine
Issuing girls with the HPV vaccine is one step towards eradicating the menace. Zambia’s Health Minister, Chitalu Chilufya, urged parents to obliterate the myths going around that the vaccine might lead to infertility. In fact, he confirmed that the vaccine was carried out in a pilot phase and its safety and efficacy is proved. He also added that it will improve the health of young women.