Kerala to give vaccination to prevent cervical cancer, says CM

CM Pinarayi Vijayan at the new cancer block of Ernakulam General Hospital after inaugurating the facility. Along with him are ministers Veena George, P Rajeeve and M B Rajesh, Hibi Eden MP, MLAs T J Vinod and K J Maxy and Mayor M Anilkumar. Photo: I&PRD

Kochi: The state government will initiate steps to provide vaccination to prevent rising cases of cervical cancer in women, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said here on Monday.

He said the vaccination drive is being planned the way developed countries do it. The chief minister made the crucial announcement while inaugurating the new cancer speciality block of Ernakulam General Hospital.

“New studies show that seven lakh people above 30 in the state are likely to have cancer, of which breast cancer is the most common. The data also indicates that cases of cervical cancer are also on the rise. Kerala is taking strong measures to prevent the disease,” the chief minister said.

Stating that Kerala has taken up the challenge to control the spread of lifestyle diseases, the chief minister called on the people to help the government achieve the objective.

“Cancer is also a lifestyle disease. In the latest budget, funds have been allocated separately for three main cancer centres. He said a lot of innovative facilities have been brought to the Regional Cancer Centre in Thiruvananthapuram and the Malabar Cancer Centre,” the CM said.

The new cancer block of Ernakulam General Hospital. Photo: I&PRD

“Apart from increasing facilities for cancer treatment in hospitals, special programmes have been devised to handle complex cases. Kerala Cancer Control Strategy, which was implemented with the aim of the comprehensive prevention of the disease, has been implemented in all districts. This helps in early detection of cancer cases. Cancer early detection clinics are set up in all government hospitals once every week. Cancer treatment will be decentralised by forming a cancer grid comprising cancer centres, medical colleges, district, general and taluk hospitals,” he said.

The chief minister said that the new cancer block in the general hospital will give a fillip to the health sector of Kochi.

“It’s a huge achievement that 100 cancer patients could be given in-patient treatment at a general hospital. The cancer block is equipped with modern facilities such as separate wards for men and women, a cancer ICU, a chemotherapy unit and a neutropenia ICU which ensures emergency treatment for patients in case their platelet count goes down during chemotherapy. The treatment equipment has been made available in association with Kerala Medical Services Corporation Ltd,” the chief minister said.

Health Minister Veena George, who was the chief guest at the event, said the construction of the Kochi Cancer Centre at Kalamassery will be completed and the facility will be dedicated to the people this year itself.

Ministers P Rajeeve and M B Rajesh, Hibi Eden MP, MLAs T J Vinod and K J Maxy and Mayor M Anilkumar were among those who attended the meeting. 

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