APEC member economies are participating in policy talks on the elimination of human papillomavirus (HPV) infection and cervical cancer at APEC Health Week, which runs from August 22-26 in Bangkok.
Following a lengthy hiatus during the pandemic, discussions are resuming to identify disease prevention, screening and treatment measures for the first APEC roadmap to boost women’s economic progress through cervical cancer prevention and control. The roadmap was created between 2014 and 2017 and is in line with the World Health Organization’s Global Strategy for cervical cancer eradication by 2030.
Thailand will also convene discussions to boost HPV vaccination coverage for grade 5 children.
According to Dr Somsak Akksilp, Director-General of the Department of Medical Services (DMS), cervical cancer has become one of the most common HPV-related cancers in women. This particular type of cancer affects 600,000 women worldwide each year, with around 340,000 cases being fatal. APEC economies have recorded about 38% of all infected women and 35% of fatalities.
Dr Somsak said the summit would showcase strategies and their implementation among APEC economies to prevent, detect, cure and follow up on known cancer cases within the bloc.
According to the DMS director-general, the attendees will also explore interventions and preparation work needed to assure the continuation of HPV and cervical cancer prevention initiatives during a pandemic. (NNT)