DUBLIN, Ireland: Ireland is making significant strides toward eradicating cervical cancer by 2040, according to Minister for Health Stephen Donnelly.
He expressed confidence that with the sustained efforts of all stakeholders, the country can achieve this ambitious target.
Minister Donnelly's announcement coincided with Cervical Cancer Elimination Day of Action, a global initiative dedicated to wiping out cervical cancer. Currently, Ireland sees around 300 women being diagnosed with cervical cancer annually, with 90 losing their lives to the disease.
The World Health Organization (WHO) defines the elimination of cervical cancer as having fewer than 4 cases per 100,000 women. To reach this milestone, Ireland is focusing on several key objectives. One crucial aspect is boosting HPV vaccination rates among girls aged 15, aiming to increase coverage from the current 80 percent to the WHO target of 90 percent by 2030.
Additionally, Ireland intends to surpass WHO targets by maintaining cervical screening coverage at or above 73 percent. It also aims to exceed WHO targets by ensuring that at least 97 percent of women diagnosed receive treatment within the first year.
Minister Donnelly emphasized that babies born today will grow up in an Ireland, where the elimination of cervical cancer is a realistic expectation.