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The wife of the governor of Ebonyi State, Mary-Maudline Nwifuru, has begun a free cervical cancer screening for 1,000 women in the state.
Mrs Nwifuru did this while inaugurating the free Cervical Cancer Awareness Programme in Elinwovu General Hospital, in Abakaliki Local Government Area (LGA) on Monday.
The programme, in line with the Nwifuru pet project, Better Health for Rural Women, Children and Internally Displaced (BERWO) Foundation, was organised in collaboration with Medical Women Association (MWA) and the Alex Ekwueme Federal University Teaching Hospital, Abakaliki (AE-FUTHA).
The theme for 2024 Cervical Cancer Awareness Month is “Ending Cervical Cancer within a few Generations, with the Goal of raising Cervical Cancer and Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) Vaccination Awareness”.
It is geared towards saving the lives of women.
According to Mrs Nwifuru, cervical cancer is one of the most common ailments among women, saying that the power to combat the disease rests in education, early detection, and proactive health measures.
Mrs Nwifuru called on all medical practitioners, stakeholders and traditional rulers to show more commitment to educating, advocating, and supporting women’s health to prevent health condition.
“By working together, we can create a world where cervical cancer is not just treatable but preventable,” she said.
Speaking also, Lilian Nwobashi, president, Medical Women Association, said the programme was in commemoration of the international cervical cancer awareness month.
Mrs Nwobashi said that the programme was geared towards sensitising women on the dangers of cervical cancer, a leading cause of death in women.
“We are starting with the first 200 to 300 women. All the partners are here to conduct the cervical cancer screening for all Ebonyi women.
“We want to catch them early, teach women when to go to hospital and signs of the ailment.
“There is possibility for treatment as AE-FUTHA and the National Obstetrics Fistula Centre are partnering to ensure that this happens,” she said.
Moses Ekuma, the Ebonyi commissioner for health, and Sunday Nwogba, chairman, Abakaliki LGA, agreed that cervical cancer was most common in the world and urged women to avail themselves of the opportunity to be screened.
The team leader of BERWO, Nkechi Echiegu, decried the increasing cases of the condition that needed to be handled.
“Nwifuru’s office and the MWA have partnered to screen women of cervical cancer and give health talks on general cancer issues with other health-related matters.
“She mobilised women from the 13 LGAs of the state within the reproductive age range of 25 to 65 years,” she said.