Comprehensive Cervical Cancer Prevention Program
Country of Operation
- Merck & Co. Inc.For-profit
- Rwanda’s Ministry of HealthGovernment
SummaryThe Comprehensive Cervical Cancer Prevention Program is a public-private partnership that incorporates both vaccinations against four types of HPV for girls and modern molecular diagnostic screening for women.
The program's goal is to create a comprehensive and coordinated program that includes HPV vaccination, cancer screening with HPV DNA testing, and treatment to address the nation’s unmet needs for cervical cancer-related health services.
Key program components
The program, launched in April 2011, includes vaccination with GARDASIL[Human Papillomavirus Quadrivalent (Types 6, 11, 16 and 18) Vaccine, Recombinant] for appropriate girls 12 to 15 years of age and modern molecular diagnostic screening for women between the ages of 35 and 45. Rwanda is the first nation in Africa to offer a comprehensive prevention program for cervical cancer that incorporates both vaccinations against four types of HPV for appropriate girls and modern molecular diagnostic screening for women. In first three years of the national prevention program, the Ministry of Health, with the support of Merck, will offer GARDASIL to girls 12 to 15 years of age, while QIAGEN's DNA-based molecular diagnostic HPV tests and the diagnostic HC2 HPV DNA Test and the careHPV Test – will be offered to women between the ages of 35 and 45. The QIAGEN's careHPV test has been designed to reach women where access to medical care is more challenging – the portable testing system can be performed in any health clinic setting by healthcare workers with minimal lab training. Merck is providing more than two million free doses of GARDASIL to the Government of Rwanda, while QIAGEN will provide 250,000 free HPV screening tests, along with all the equipment and training necessary to successfully perform the tests. After the first three years, the Government of Rwanda will continue routine vaccination of appropriate 12 year old girls, and Merck will provide GARDASIL at a discounted access price that is made available for national vaccination programs in GAVI-eligible countries.