A POPULATION Services International – Zimbabwe (PSI) top official yesterday said demand for cervical cancer screening had surged over the past months as more and more women were now keen to know their health status.
PSI sexual and reproductive health manager Nyaradzo Muhonde said they had screened over 15 000 women since the programme was launched last August.
Cervical cancer is ranked as the second most common cancer after cancer of the breast.
“Since the programme started on August 5 2013, we have screened 15 105 women as at June 30 this year,” Muhonde said.
“We screen an average of 15 women per day. Where women know about the service, demand has been overwhelming, this does not apply to PSI sites only, but to all other sites offering the service.”
Muhonde said the biggest challenge they were facing was that demand for the service had exceeded supply.
“The Ministry of Health and Child Care (MOHCC) and other players in the programme are working towards increasing capacity so that the country is able to meet the demands of women who need to get screened.”
The government offers the same free service at all central, provincial and some district hospitals. PSI offers cervical cancer screening services at eight of their New Start Centre sites in Harare, Masvingo, Chinhoyi, Triangle, Bulawayo, Mutare, Chitungwiza and Chipinge.
According to statistics, about four women die of cervical cancer every day in Zimbabwe.