UAE gets cervical cancer vaccine

A Staff Reporter
Filed on January 7, 2007

DUBAI — The UAE has become the first country in the Middle East to acquire the vaccine against cervical cancer, Gardasil, following the Ministry of Health’s approval.

It was recently announced that Professor Ian Frazer, Director of the University of Queensland’s Centre for Immunology and Cancer Research (CICR), Australia was a potential candidate for a Nobel Prize for the creation of the first and only vaccine against cervical cancer.

Gardasil, which is distributed by Merck Sharp & Dohme, is now available in over 33 countries around the world.

“We are proud to have placed the UAE on the map with leading countries such as the US, Australia and EU by approving Gardasil, the first breakthrough vaccine that prevents the cancer,” said Dr Wisam Haddadin, Franchise Manager, Gulf Region, Merck Sharp & Dohme.

Cervical cancer is primarily caused by HPV (Human Papilloma Virus). Approximately, 2.3 million women are currently diagnosed with cervical cancer worldwide and 800 women die because of cervical cancer every day.

The annual average of reported cervical cancer cases in the UAE has tripled in 2005 compared with that from 1998 to 2004 (Source: Cancer Registry Programme).

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