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Expert urges more awareness on cancer prevention in Nigeria

A don, Prof. Jonah Musa, on Tuesday called on government and private organisations to increase the level of awareness for women on prevention of cervical cancer.

Musa of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, College of Health Sciences, University of Jos, made the call while delivering the 94th Inaugural Lecture series of the university in Jos.

The lecture is titled “A Sexual Transmissible Cancer: Miracle of Cure or Prevention?”

According to him, the more awareness women get on the dangers of the disease, the earlier they will avail themselves of regular screening.

The don, who said that cervical cancer is preventable, expressed dismay that poor knowledge of it could lead to higher deaths in the society.

“Cervical cancer is entirely a preventable cancer, transmitted through sexually acquired viruses whose persistence and clearance could be modified through behavioral intervention, or the use of primary preventive vaccines.

“Government investment in women’s education is an important social intervention given that more screening at earlier ages could benefit them more.

“Government should also invest in providing preventive vaccination for all girls between the ages of nine and 12 before sexual activity.

“The money invested in preventive vaccination will save us the huge expenses in treatment for invasive cervical cancer cases.

“For instance, if we invest $20 in preventive vaccines, we will save more than $20,000 in pursuing a miracle for cure in the future,” he said.

The expert also called for the implementation and enforcement of stiffer sanctions against sexual harassment on campus adding that such move would curtail the spread of cervical cancer among young women.

Musa further called on religious organisations, communities and traditional rulers to create awareness on the need for regular cancer checks.

Speaking at the event, Prof. Sebastian Maimako, the Vice Chancellor of the university, said that inaugural lectures remained an important activity in the life of every university.

Represented by Prof. Greg Ejikeme, the Deputy Vice Chancellor (DVC), Adminstration, Maimako said that the lecture would enhance teaching and learning, and spur further research in the field.

“Inaugural lecture is an important activity in every university because it spurs further research.

“So, this will not only add value to teaching and learning, but will also contribute greatly to the body of knowledge in our university, Nigeria and beyond,” he said.

The vice chancellor called on other professors in the university to hold their inaugural lecture in order to contribute their quota to body of knowledge in the institution and beyond. (NAN)

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