Newsline Health (February 11)

Reproductive health specialists in Belize are reporting progress in their efforts to reduce the cases of cervical cancer.

This is one of the most common forms of cancer affecting women across the Caribbean.

For the past 15 years the Belize Family Life Association has been offering an advanced screening for women, known as the Visual Inspection with Acetic Acid, in a bid to reduce the infection and mortality rates.

Clinical Services Director, Dr Cynthia Terry says too many women are dying from a preventable disease, and her organisation wants to change that.

The women return one year later for a follow up visit. Dr Terry says this treatment method has been successful.


On to another major health concern in the Caribbean.

It’s over 30 years since HIV/AIDS was first diagnosed in the region.

And although people infected with the virus are living longer, thanks to advances in treatment, stigma and discrimination remains prevalent.

Technical Coordinator of the National AIDS Coordinating Committee, Dr Ayanna Sebro, says there is need for greater focus on the psychological impact of HIV/AIDS.

Health officials say regular testing and early treatment can allow people who are infected with HIV to lead normal and productive lives.