Ghana rolls out Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) vaccine for basic schoolgirls
ACCRA, Feb 11, 2013 (Xinhua via COMTEX) --
The Ghana Health Service (GHS)
rolled out here on Monday a program to vaccinate 32,000 basic
schoolgirls against cervical cancer, the leading killer disease of
women in reproductive age in the country.
Speaking to Xinhua via telephone, Director for Ghana's Expanded
Program on Immunization (EPI), Dr Kwadwo Antwi Agyei, said girls
between the ages of 9 and 12 in the selected districts in
Northern and Central Regions would commence the Human Papilloma
Virus (HPV) vaccination between Monday and Friday.
"Each girl needs three doses of the 130-U.S. dollar per dose
vaccine over a six-month period with the second dose occurring
within one month of the first," Dr. Antwi-Agyei explained.
According to him, the exercise, which is taking place in six
districts in the Northern Region and seven in the Central Region,
was to test its acceptability to the girls, their parents, and
It was also to see how easy it would be to reach the targeted
group and girls out of school.
"Answers to these questions would then inform the formulation
of a plan to roll out a nationwide vaccination exercise," he
Funding for the 8.3 million-dollar worth of vaccines was
provided by Axios, a United States-based Non-Governmental
Organization (NGO) though the advocacy of Ruwide, a local NGO.
Ghana, according to official GHS data, has a population of 6.57
million women aged 15 years and older who are at risk of
developing cervical cancer, with 3,038 new cases diagnosed
annually while 2006 die of the disease each year.
The disease is the most frequent cancer among Ghanaian women
aged between 15 and 44 years.
[ InfoTech Spotlight's Homepage ]