The Southern Africa Litigation Centre is pleased to share the report, Tackling Cervical Cancer: Improving Access to Cervical Cancer Services for Women in Southern Africa.  Cervical cancer is a leading cause of cancer death among women in southern Africa, and is either the primary or secondary cause of cancer death among women in all 10 countries in which the Southern Africa Litigation Centre (SALC) works. Moreover, the negative impact of cervical cancer is exacerbated in southern Africa given the high prevalence of HIV among women in the region.

Cervical cancer is easily preventable and treatable in any resource setting. However, necessary services to prevent and treat cervical cancer have not been made available or easily accessible in southern Africa. The report, based on a combination of desktop research and field research in Namibia and Zambia on the availability of and access to cervical cancer services, found that very few countries in the region have comprehensive policies on cervical cancer. Essential prevention services such as screening and vaccination are also not widely available in the public health sector in most countries, and treatment for both pre-cancerous lesions and invasive cancer remains a challenge. Read the rest of this entry »

From 25 – 26 April 2012, SALC will host a meeting to discuss an advocacy strategy aimed at increasing access to and availability of cervical cancer prevention and treatment services as part of sexual and reproductive health services for women in southern Africa.  

SALC recently undertook research on the status of policies related to cervical cancer, as well as the availability of and access to prevention and treatment services in southern African countries using Namibia and Zambia as case studies. The meeting brings together stakeholders with experience working on cancer, sexual and reproductive health, HIV and women’s rights more broadly in southern Africa to discuss the findings of the research and possible advocacy strategies in Namibia and Zambia specifically, as well as at the regional level.  Read the rest of this entry »