CERVICAL CANCER SCREENING AND PREVENTION THERAPY – PROJECT
Donor: MARIE STOPPES INTERNATIONAL
IMPLEMEMTATION AREAS: Nairobi, Nakuru, Mombasa, Kisumu, Nyeri, Meru, Kiambu, Mombasa and UasinGishu County
Duration: November 2012 – November 2016
Due to inadequate knowledge relating to cervical cancer many women continue to suffer in silence, CCS&PT project implemented by FHOK and with support from Oasis of the Palm sought to enhance service uptake in predominantly low income areas, CCS&PT project continues to conduct mobile screening targeting women. The outreaches play a critical role in ensuring that women who would otherwise not have accessed screening services receive them. Through the project a total of 185,474 women have been screened using VIA/VILI which is recommended for low resource set-up. The outreaches are conducted in collaboration with Community Health workers who are integral in mobilizing women to access and utilize screening services offered during outreaches
As told by a beneficiary the project has broken both physical and cost related barriers as illustrated by a beneficiary in Eldoret:
“I would not have gone to the hospital to be screened. I didn’t find it necessary then to be screened. However, because of the awareness created about cancer, mimi nakuambia vile tu niliona tent imewekwa na madaktari wa kupima, nilienda mara moja. (I tell you, immediately I saw tents erected for screening, I seized the moment at once)”
The project has made a deliberate effort to reach women in very remote regions of every sub county within 12 counties where the project is being implemented. The outreaches have been conducted in collaboration with community leaders who as part of their contribution to the project provide space for outreaches to be conducted in places such as schools, churches and market areas for tents to be erected. Whereas men would initially denied their spouses access to premises where outreaches were being conducted have had a change in attitude and perceptions this has seen men take up the responsibility of transporting their spouses to outreach venues
“Tukianza hata wazee walikua wanakata wakidhani ni mambo ya ukimwi kwa sababu hiyo ndiyo ilikuwa ikipimwa san asana. Lakini baada ya kuelimishawa na madaktari kanisani, mume wangu na wengine wameweza kutupatia transport hata bwana za wengine huwapelaka wenyewe.”(When we started men would refuse thinking that it was about HIV testing however after sensitization by service provider who visited our church my husband and others have been willing to provide transport while others accompany their spouses).- Project beneficiary Kisumu
“I thought I should take initiative and get screened since cancer concerns everybody,” says Teresia. She was able to access cervical cancer screening during a clinical outreach was organized in Mariakani-Nakuru.
Even though the outreaches are done outdoors beyond the premises of a static clinic, FHOK’s trained service providers maintain quality of care and keep records in accordance with policies that guarantee confidentiality to clients.
“I would advise all ladies to go for screening even if you are young and have not had children since it affects everyone who is sexually active,”emphasizes Teresia. She is proud of the move she made and the issue was addressed immediately.
“It’s not about targets but ensuring women don’t suffer in silence, I will personally break any barrier until I reach them all” – Jill The project Manager