In August 2020, the World Health Assembly has adopted the global strategy to accelerate the elimination of cervical cancer as a public health problem.
Cervical cancer is a preventable and curable disease, as long as it is detected early and managed effectively. Yet it is the fourth most common form of cancer among women worldwide, and the most common cancer among women living with HIV, who are six times as likely to develop cervical cancer. In 2018, the disease claimed the lives of more than 300 000 women.
To eliminate cervical cancer, all countries must reach and maintain an incidence rate of below four per 100 000 women. Attaining this goal requires strategic action, and WHO outlines the necessary actions in its global strategy, envisioning a world where cervical cancer is eliminated as a public health problem and keeping the 2030 agenda on SDGs.
WHO’s strategy of elimination rests on three main pillars:
- prevention through vaccination
- screening and treatment of precancerous lesions
- treatment and palliative care for invasive cervical cancer