Second Cervical Cancer Forum 2021- Concept Note
Sharjah, United Arab Emirates
Friends of Cancer Patients (FoCP) is one of the civil society organizations that have been paramount to the UAEs success in addressing cervical cancer. FoCP have been providing awareness and support to cancer patients for the past 21 years. Through its different community and advocacy initiatives, FoCP has been able to gain widespread recognition and awards from numerous leading institutions, locally, regionally, and internationally for helping cancer patients and creating awareness about the disease. FoCP partnered with the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) to develop programmatic guidance to the Ministry of Health and partner agencies for the development and revision of their cervical cancer prevention and control programmes.
On the 31st of January 2019, marking the Cervical Cancer Awareness Month and to support the national HPV response, FoCP hosted the “Turning the Tide on HPV and Cervical Cancer” Forum in the Emirate of Sharjah- UAE. The forum showcased best practices emerging from the UAE and announced the “Sharjah Declaration on Cervical Cancer” that was formulated in partnership with the UNFPA and the MENA Coalition for HPV Elimination. The declaration addresses the actions and the collaborations needed in order to tackle cervical cancer and save countless lives across the region. The declaration highlighted the following three main objectives to be achieved:
- Advocate for regional and national cervical cancer strategies which align with global initiatives;
- Establish cooperative capacity building efforts to expand countries’ and organizations’ cervical cancer control activities; and
- Work with partners to develop and implement innovative technologies for screening and pricing policies to stimulate increased vaccination and screening coverage. Gaining and exchanging experience from other best practices at global
Building on that first forum in Sharjah and supporting the global efforts to increase the awareness on Cervical cancer, FoCP is partnering with UNFPA to host the second Cervical Cancer Forum in 2021 “Accelerating Action on HPV and Cervical Cancer”. The forum will be convened in partnership with local, regional, and international health authorities and centres of medical knowledge such as, Ministry of Health & Prevention- UAE, Health Promotion Research Group- UAE, Union for International Cancer Control (UICC), and WHO (NCD EMRO).Contributors to the Conference will include pioneering actors in this area including: Gavi Alliance, Global Health Institutes and University Hospitals, pioneer researchers, among others.
The forum will review the “Sharjah Declaration on Cervical Cancer” 2019 efforts and aims to:
- Bring together global stakeholders, including academia, community leaders, scientists, and policy makers to promote and enhance programmatic collaborations to more effectively address regional and national responses to HPV and cervical cancer in the Arab region since the previous forum.
- Discuss the establishment of sustainable and equitable cervical cancer and HPV eradication programmes; including under conditions of health emergencies e.g. COVID-19.
The expected outcome of this forum is to propose a set of recommendations and a call for action for addressing cervical cancer that integrates the pillars of prevention, treatment, palliative care and social aspects globally and specifically in the Arab region.
The 2nd Cervical Cancer Forum will be a two-day event organized on 27-28 January 2021 virtually. The online forum platform will allow active interaction among panelists, speakers, and audience members. This modality was concluded as the best option to convene the forum in order to prioritize the safety of all forum participants within the COVID-19 pandemic situation, while at the same time ensuring the efficiency of the forum discussions and outcomes.