By: Indiana University School of Medicine
02 December 2010
Indiana will join a multi-state program focused on cervical cancer prevention thanks to an unrestricted gift from GlaxoSmithKline Pharmaceuticals to the Indiana University School of Medicine, in partnership with the Kristen Forbes EVE Foundation.
Cervical Cancer-Free America (CCFA) is an initiative designed to raise awareness, increase screenings for cervical cancer and increase rates of human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination with the ultimate goal of eliminating cervical cancer. HPV is the primary cause of cervical cancer. Initial funding for this initiative was through a $1 million unrestricted educational grant by GlaxoSmithKline to the University of North Carolina Gillings School of Global Public Health. The CCFA program has since spread to Alabama, Kentucky, California and Indiana and will probably be initiated in other states in the future.
Gregory Zimet, Ph.D., is the recipient of $150,000 in funding for Cervical Cancer-Free Indiana. Dr. Zimet, who is a professor of pediatrics and clinical psychology in the Section of Adolescent Medicine, has spent several years conducting studies of the public’s response to vaccinations, primarily one for HPV prevention.
Dr. Zimet has teamed with Kirk Forbes, whose 23-year-old daughter died of cervical cancer. He now directs the foundation started in 2009 in memory of his daughter, the Kristen Forbes EVE Foundation.
The Foundation, which is devoted to the eradication of cervical cancer, will expand on its existing strategies to increase awareness about cervical cancer and rates of cervical cancer screening and HPV vaccination through outreach to disadvantaged, racial minority and ethnic communities that tend to have higher rates of HPV infection and cervical cancer.
“Our mission is to educate, screen and prevent HPV and cervical cancer,” said Forbes. “We hope to reduce deaths, hysterectomies and other surgeries as well as cervical cancer.”
(Note from SaneVax: If Indiana truly wants to erradicate cervical cancer, they will follow screening and treatment protocols that have been proven successful and tell women the truth-death from cervical cancer can be virtually eliminated with screening and appropriate follow-up when abnormal cells are detected. They would not waste precious medical funds on unproven attempts to eliminate one of the risk factors for cervical cancer via HPV vaccinations. Women at high risk for contracting cervical cancer cannot afford to wait 10-15 years to see if vaccination against a couple of high risk genotypes of HPV is a successful strategy.)