LIBERIA—Liberia has incorporated the HPV vaccine into routine immunization, in addition to other measures such as cervical cancer screening and treatment, to address cervical cancer’s serious threat.

In Liberia, cervical cancer is the most common cancer among women, followed by breast cancer, and is the major cause of female cancer-related deaths.

 According to the country’s HPV Information Centre, women between the ages of 15 and 44 are more vulnerable.

Vaccination is primarily aimed at females aged nine to fourteen, with the goal of giving protection before sexual activity begins.

The immunization effort, which began in November 2019, has successfully reached over 242 000 eligible girls, with 48% taking their first dose and 26% completing the two-dose series.

With this coverage, Liberia is steadily moving closer to meeting the 90% HPV vaccination target for eligible people by 2030.

The ongoing efforts highlight the importance of increasing vaccine coverage and, ultimately, lowering the prevalence of cervical cancer in Liberia.

World Health Organization (WHO), Gavi the Vaccine Alliance, UNICEF, and other partners are assisting the government’s efforts.

According to the most recent WHO data, a total of 470 women died from cervical cancer in Liberia in 2020, with an additional 639 new cases diagnosed, or 26 cases per 100,000 women.

Adolphus Clark, manager of the Liberia Health Ministry’s Expanded Programme on Immunization (EPI), expressed enthusiasm for the partnership among healthcare workers, schools, parents, and communities to ensure this vaccination reaches every eligible girl.

Dr. Abdulahi Suleiman, EPI Team Lead at WHO Liberia, stated that Liberia is one of the African nations leading the deployment of the HPV vaccination into routine immunization protocols, with cooperation from WHO, UNICEF, Gavi, and other partners.

He went on to explain that the WHO is thrilled that girls in Liberia now have access to this life-saving vaccine.

Dr. Suleiman sees this as an investment in the future of Liberia’s daughters, mothers, and leaders, with each girl who gets vaccinated living a more strong life, a safe family, and a promising future.

WHO and partners are committed to providing the HPV vaccine to 86 million girls worldwide by 2025, and in Africa alone, this combined effort has already resulted in the vaccine being introduced in 27 countries and the establishment of 34 screening programmes.

For all the latest healthcare industry news from Africa and the World, subscribe to our NEWSLETTER, and YouTube Channel, follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn, and like us on Facebook.