For most of the world, including Haiti, cervical cancer is the most common cause of cancer deaths in women.
No woman should ever die of cervical cancer. If detected early, it is a treatable disease.
Ever since Haiti Foundation of Hope’s first medical team to Terre Blanche 15 years ago, each team would see at least one case, if not more, of advanced untreatable cancer of the cervix.
Dr. William Petty, a gynecological oncological specialist, has been on several medical teams to Terre Blanche. He was aware of this problem. In March 2009, we were honored to have Dr. Petty speak at the first HFH annual medical conference. His topic was on the diagnosis and treatment of cervical cancer.
As is often the case in developing countries, HFH had difficulty initiating a program for screening and treatment of this condition.
With this background, I am very pleased to announce the following:
OPERATION BLESSING HAITI, (Jeny-Flore D’AUGUST, MD, Health Manager), based in Port-au-Prince, has offered to provide free on-site screening for cervical cancer for patients in the Terre Blanche area.
This program allows the Clinic of Hope to work with Haitian colleagues in PAP for future collaboration in the management of this condition. If needed, this program will also provide free treatment and follow-up at their PAP facilities.
An Operation Blessing Haiti team recently demonstrated their commitment to this program by making their first successful visit to Terre Blanche, despite the difficulties of travel and insecurity. They screened 43 patients for cervical cancer. I have been working in Haiti for almost 40 years and I have never seen any program that provided the means of screening 43 women for cervical cancer in one day!
We are very pleased that the Clinic of Hope is now offering diagnostic and treatment programs in conjunction with OPERATION BLESSING HAITI in the battle against cervical cancer for women in Haiti.
by Dr. Joe Markee, HFH Founder Emeritus