Sabah women urged to get tested for HPV

KOTA KINABALU: Many women are still afraid of going for Human Papillomavirus (HPV) tests, a recent screening programme found.

Kapayan assemblywoman, Jannie Lasimbang urged women to get tested, saying that there was no need to be afraid or shy because ultimately, health comes first.

HPV is usually infected through intimate contact and skin-to-skin contact in the genital area.

Infection with low-risk HPV subtypes can cause warts (such as genital warts), while others are known to cause various types of cancer including cervical, anal, penile and throat cancer.

"Through the free HPV PCR screening programme recently, I see that there are still many women who are afraid to do this screening,” said Lasimbang.

She said programmes like these were opportunities to know the level of one’s health so that they could be treated early if detected positive,” she said.

"I want to emphasise to the women out there that this HPV PCR screening is safe, painless and easy to do because we ourselves will take the sample and the results will come out as early as three weeks after doing the screening,” she said.

During the programme last month, a total of 215 underwent HPV screenings which were conducted in Penampang, Inanam, Keningau, Tenom and Tulid, said Lasimbang.

She said this free HPV PCR screening programme was organised by the ROSE Foundation in collaboration with Wanita DAP Sabah.

Less than 7% of the tests turned out to be positive, she said, adding this showed that HPV does exist and needs to be prevented early.

"An upcoming programme will focus on HPV vaccination and my office will collaborate with the National Cancer Society Malaysia, which will focus more on giving vaccination to women between the ages of nine and 45 in the Penampang district,” Lasimbang said.

They are targeting at least 500 women for this programme and colleges or private schools that meet the requirements are urged to contact the organisers to get more information on this programme, she said.

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HPV , Virus , Test , Jannie Lasimbang , Women , Health , Cancer


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