Terça, Maio 21, 2024
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The President of the National Immunization Technical Advisory Group (NITAG) in Timor-Leste, Doctor Mariano da Silva Marques, said two years ago, the group made the recommendation to the ministry of health of Timor-Leste to introduce the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) vaccine to young women to prevent cervical cancer.

The President of the National Immunization Technical Advisory Group (NITAG) in Timor-Leste, Doctor Mariano da Silva Marques, said two years ago, the group made the recommendation to the ministry of health of Timor-Leste to introduce the Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) vaccine to young women to prevent cervical cancer.

He added the vaccine is needed because based on data on overseas patient transfers, most cases are for cancer diagnosis, with cancer of the breast and cervical cancer the higher proportion of referred cases.

“We recommended this vaccine two years ago. This vaccine can prevent cervical cancer. We are spending too much money sending patients overseas and cancer is a devastating illness. As such, we recommended the vaccine so we can protect our young girls and women from being diagnoses with cervical cancer in future,” he said at Hotel Timor, in Dili.

He added they guarantee the type of vaccine they have recommended for introduction in Timor-Leste is safe and effective for the prevention of cervical cancer because this is based on solid research on the quality and safety of the vaccine, and given the success rates in other nations where this vaccine has already been introduced.

Meanwhile, the Clinical Director, at the National Hospital Guido Valadares, Marcelino Correia, said in 2022 the ministry of health established an oncology centre at the hospital for the screening of cervical cancer.

He added until December 2022, they were able to screen 156 patients, with 6 patients returning a positive diagnosis for cervical cancer.

“Of the six, three are undergoing treatment locally, while the other three were sent overseas for treatment,” he said.

The Minister of Health, Doctor Odete Maria Freitas Belo, guaranteed that in 2023, Timor-Leste will also introduce the HPV new vaccine for the prevention of cervical cancer in the country.

“We already have a campaign to introduce a new vaccine, Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine (PCV), to prevent respiratory illnesses, and we will also introduce the vaccine that will prevent women and girls from developing cervical cancer. Both these vaccines were recommended for introduction,” she said.

She added that now they are making the necessary arrangements and that according to the plan, the vaccines will be introduced in July 2023.