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Cervical cancer is the second most common cancer afflicting women worldwide. According to the 2010 Philippine Cancer Facts and Estimates, approximately 12 Filipino women die daily due to cervical cancer in the Philippines. Cervical cancer control is one f the major priorities of the Department of Health (DOH) thru the Cancer Prevention and Control Program.

Cervical Cancer Awareness

The DOH will give free cervical cancer screening to women 21 years old and above in 65 DOH-retained and selected private tertiary hospitals nationwide throughout the month of May this year.

DOH-retained hospitals

  • Jose Reyes Memorial Medical Center
  • Dr. Jose Fabella Memorial Hospital
  • East Avenue Medical Center
  • Tondo Medical Center
  • Quirino Memorial Medical Center
  • Amang Rodriguez Medical Center
  • Rizal Medical Center
  • Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center
  • Cagayan Valley Medical Center
  • Paulino J. Garcia Memorial Research Medical Center
  • Batangas Regional Hospital
  • Vicente Sotto Memorial Medical Center
  • Celestino Gallares Memorial Medical Center
  • Zamboanga City Medical Center
  • Northern Mindanao Medical Center
  • Southern Philippines Medical Center
  • Davao Medical Center
  • Maguindanao Provincial Hospital
  • Sulu Provincial Hospital

Nearly, all cervical cancer cases are caused by Human Papilloma Virus (HPV). In line with this, DOH in partnership with the Department of Education (DepEd) and Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) will conduct this August its school-based HPV Immunization Program. Two doses of HPV vaccines will be given for free to girls in Grade 4 aged 9-13 years of age in public elementary schools in 20 priority provinces.

20 priorities provinces

  • North Cotabato
  • Sarangani
  • Davao Oriental
  • Sulu
  • Zamboanga del Sur
  • Lanao del Sur
  • Maguindanao
  • Iloilo
  • Negros Occidental
  • Cebu
  • Negros Oriental
  • Northern Samar
  • Eastern Samar
  • Leyte
  • Quezon
  • Camarines Sur
  • Masbate
  • Apayao
  • Ifugao
  • Pangasinan

Health Secretary Janette Garin said that a Pap smear or visual inspection using acetic acid (VIA) should be done on women who are sexually active or had a history of sexual contact as cervical cancer screening methods. Cervical cancer can be treated and cured if early detection is done. Garin advised the public to go to the nearest health center to prevent cervical cancer.