In 2018, an estimated 570.000 new cases of cervical cancer were diagnosed worldwide, moving the disease to fourth place in the ranking of the most commonly diagnosed cancers in women. The world has decided to take action.
Overall incidence and mortality are higher in low- and middle-income countries, but are not avoided in more developed countries. Experts predict that the global burden of the disease will continue to increase and the number of new cases will rise to an alarming 700.000 and deaths to 400.000 per year by 2030.
Together against cancer
The European Commission has adopted a plan to combat cervix cancer, which aims to stop the disease. Overall, the global strategy, involving up to 194 countries, aims to successfully implement a combination of vaccination, screening and treatment that will reduce the number of new cases of cervical cancer by more than 40% by 2050 and prevent more than five million deaths.
Prevention and Screening Innovation Project Towards Elimination of Cervical Cancer (PRESCRIP-TEC), is one of the projects that have been launched to implement the global strategy and achieve the proposed objective.
PRESCRIP-TEC will lead to more innovative and effective screening of the disease in women from marginalized groups by improving the quality and availability of health services. The project is being implemented in four countries – Bangladesh, India, Uganda and Slovakia – under the leadership of the Medical University Center in Groningen, the Netherlands.
Trnava is also involved in the global project
Trnava University in Trnava, together with other Slovak partners – the League Against Cancer, Healthy Regions and the Ministry of Health of the Slovak Republic – are involved in the project. Teams of experts from the Department of Public Health, the Department of Nursing, the Institute for Global Health and Epidemiology, and the Center for Microbiology and Infection Prevention have teamed up to help eliminate cervical cancer. Slovak partners are actively involved in two work packages led by doctor Mark Majdan, MSc., PhD.
The project itself is divided into several work packages aimed at improving the screening process and measuring their feasibility by fostering screening through self-sampling tests to detect HPV infection, based on state-of-the-art screening technologies, such as the use of automated mucosal change detection using artificial intelligence, and clinical guidelines and protocols.