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UCI Calls for Vaccination of Boys Against HPV

Responding to concerns raised by the World Health Organization this morning urging countries to come up with nation specific interventions to counter unnecessary cancer deaths, Orem said they are already strengthening treatment as they have now upgraded from a single radiotherapy machine to three in addition to stocking more essential medicines.

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As government struggles to ensure that girls of 10 years and above take the full dose of the Human Papilloma Virus-HPV shots, Dr. Jackson Orem, the Executive Director of Uganda Cancer Institute-UCI wants government to consider boys against the same virus too. 

HPV causes cancer of the cervix in women and others cancers like that of the throat, which now ranks among the commonest cancers received at the institute. Dr. Orem disclosed his concern during a press briefing to mark world Cancer day on Tuesday afternoon.  

He noted that Uganda has the highest number of women suffering from cancer of the cervix across the world, saying the country had to be innovative to stop any likely increase in the number, which explains why the vaccination initially targeted girls only.    

Responding to concerns raised by the World Health Organization-WHO earlier in the day, urging countries to come up with nation specific interventions to counter unnecessary cancer deaths, Orem said they are already strengthening treatment as they have now upgraded from a single radiotherapy machine to three in addition to stocking more essential medicines.

  

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Orem told journalists that even as the institute operates with a small budget of Shillings 50billion, they are trying as much as possible to be up to date with new technologies in cancer

care.

 

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On her part, the Health Minister in charge of General Duties Robinah Nabbanja acknowledged that the country is still challenged when it comes to offering timely care for all.

She said that even as some regional cancer centers have started offering treatment; the institute still records a huge number of new patients averaging 115 patients a week.

 

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Around the world, February is dedicated to cancer awareness and the height of the awareness events will be marked on February 15 in Arua district which will also mark the launch of delivering cancer care in that region whereby patients will only be required to the institute with referral and mainly for radiotherapy services.