Roche Diagnostics India on Tuesday announced the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Cancer Awareness Prevention and Early Detection Trust (CAPED), a non-profit organisation dedicated to promoting cancer awareness, prevention, and early detection.
According to a press statement, the MoU outlines a collaboration between the two organisations to combat cervical cancer in India – the second most common cancer among Indian women.
Although cervical cancer is one of the most preventable cancers, it accounts for nearly 77,000 deaths among Indian women each year1.
“Roche Diagnostics India is committed in its efforts to reduce the burden of cervical cancer globally and the partnership with CAPED is one such recent measure to address social stigma surrounding the disease and drive awareness about cervical cancer screening. As part of the partnership, CAPED will reach out to companies in Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai, Hyderabad and Bangalore to conduct around 100 awareness workshops to encourage women employees to take charge of their health, help them understand the benefits of HPV DNA screening, recommend screening frequency, and educate them about the need to take a clinically validated test to ensure optimal test efficiency,” the company said in a statement.
“Cervical cancer is preventable in up to 93% of cases and yet, India contributes to 21% of the world’s total cases of cervical cancer 2. At CAPED, I have first-hand experience of the situation on ground. There is a huge gap in awareness among masses about cervical cancer and the human papillomavirus. Added to this is the perceived societal stigma associated with the disease and sexual behaviour which acts as a deterrent for women to get screened. There is an urgent need to develop innovative strategies that go beyond the traditional healthcare response. HPV DNA self-sampling kits can be one such innovation which provides women with ease and comfort during screening ,” said Mridu Gupta, CEO, CAPED in a statement.
The partnership with CAPED is part of Roche’s broader commitment to improving cancer care globally. The company has a long-standing legacy of innovation in cancer diagnostics and therapies, and has been at the forefront to develop new approaches to cancer care.
“Our Be Your Own Shero campaign is aimed at encouraging women to take charge of their lives so that every woman has the chance to fulfil her potential. Last year, we took a small step by offering free HPV DNA screening for all our women employees and the women family members of male employees; around 82% of the eligible employees opted for screening. We are expanding our efforts this year by joining forces with equally passionate organisations to further the cause. I am thrilled to have CAPED as a partner in our mission to raise awareness about cervical cancer and extend this conversation to every woman in the country,” Narendra Varde, Managing Director, India and Neighbouring Markets, Roche Diagnostics, said in a statement.